How to access mental health support from the comfort of your home

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During this complex and rapidly evolving global situation around the coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, it is an opportune time to reach out with information about how to access mental health support from the comfort of your home, whether it be online, via telephone or off-campus.

We also remind you that if you need information about the virus, how to protect yourself and what to do if you think you have it, consult the Ontario Government web page dedicated to the subject. Quebec residents can consult the Quebec government web page.

If you need information regarding the situation at uOttawa, please consult the University's Coronavirus update page.

Students

Still living in Ottawa or Ontario and want to speak to a counsellor?

uOttawa Counselling Services
(modified services)

The Counselling Services continues to offer modified services (telephone and online) during their regular hours of operations to students who enrolled at the University and who are still living in Ontario.

Here are the different service options:

  • For students who are already receiving services with the Counselling office, please contact your counsellor directly by email.
  • For new service requests, students can email us at couns@uOttawa.ca. Our staff will be happy to help you schedule a teletherapy session by audio or videoconference with a counsellor on the same day or within 24-48 hours.
  • Students can continue to book future appointments online, for teletherapy appointments by audio or videoconference (instead of in person).
  • The walk-in clinic is closed, but virtual same-day online appointments are still available.

Good2Talk
(telephone or text)

As a reminder, all students attending post-secondary institutions in Ontario have access to mental health support via Good2Talk 24/7/365, by calling 1-866-925-5454. As of February 2020, they have also introduced a text option:

  • English: Text GOOD2TALKON to 686868
  • French: Text ALLOJECOUTEON to 686868

Access to counselling via student health plans
(various telephone and online options available)

Did you know that uOttawa students also have the choice to access 24/7/365 support?

  • Via UOSU, undergraduate students have free access to Empower Me, to speak to a counsellor immediately at 1-844-741-6389, or to make an appointment with a counsellor, delivered in person, by telephone, by video-counselling, or by e-counselling.
    • Similar to the way you book a dentist or physiotherapist, you can also choose to see a private psychotherapist or psychologist and get reimbursed up to 80% via your health plan, with remote options available – check out the details for undergraduates here.
  • Via GSAED, graduate students have free access to the Student Support Program 24/7/365 to speak to a counsellor immediately 1-855-649-8641, or to make an appointment for telephone, e-counselling and other options such as web-based chat. Visit the SSP Website (just type in University of Ottawa or GSAÉD to identify your institution) to access the service via electronic chat or email.
    • The GSAED Health Plan also partly covers visits to a psychologist, up to an annual maximum amount – Visit your association’s page on the GreenShield website to know more (you will need to log in order to see or download your detailed booklet).
Living outside of Ontario but still in Canada and want to speak to a counsellor?

Access to counselling via student health plans
(various telephone and online options available)

Did you know that uOttawa students also have the choice to access 24/7/365 support?

  • Via UOSU, undergraduate students have free access to the Empower Me service, to speak to a counsellor immediately at 1-844-741-6389, or to make an appointment with a counsellor, delivered in person, by telephone, by video-counselling, or by e-counselling.
    • Similar to the way you book a dentist or physiotherapist, you can also choose to see a private psychotherapist or psychologist and get reimbursed up to 80% via your health plan, with remote options available – check out the details for undergraduates here.
  • Via GSAED, graduate students have free access to the Student Support Program 24/7/365 to speak to a counsellor immediately 1-855-649-8641, or to make an appointment for telephone, e-counselling and other options such as web-based chat. Visit the SSP Website (just type in University of Ottawa or GSAÉD to identify your institution) to access the service via electronic chat or email.
    • The GSAED Health Plan also partly covers visits to a psychologist, up to an annual maximum amount. Visit your association’s page on the GreenShield website to know more (you will need to log in order to see or download your detailed booklet).
Living outside of Canada and want to speak to a counsellor?

International students living abroad

Undergraduate Students

  • International students have access to support by phone 24/7, 365 days a year from 22 countries outside of Canada (see the FAQ for the list of numbers) with Empower Me via your UOSU membership. Videoconferencing is also available upon request after an initial consultation.
  • If you need access from countries other than the countries listed here, simply email: callcenter@optimaglobalhealth.com. Please note that the mobile app is only available for download in Canada.

Graduate Students

  • Via GSAED, graduate students have free access to the Student Support Program 24/7/365 to speak to a counsellor immediately 1-855-649-8641 (from Canada or the United States), or to make an appointment for telephone, e-counselling and other options such as web-based chat.
  • If you need access from other countries, visit the SSP Website (just type in University of Ottawa or GSAÉD to identify your institution) to organise access to the service via electronic chat or email.

 

For Canadian Citizens Travelling Abroad: Access to Counselling via International SOS

The University of Ottawa has partnered with International SOS to support registered uOttawa students who are Canadian citizens are normally residing in Canada but are currently outside of the country (i.e. ffor an exchange programme, fieldwork, etc.).

As of March 25, 2020, students can:

  • Contact 1-215-942-8226 or,
  • Download the Assistance App and identify their institution.

International SOS:

  • Offers 24/7 support, every day of the year
  • Offers support in over 60 languages
  • Provides an assessment
  • Offers counselling via telephone or videocall

Employees

*During these challenging times, all employee groups will have access to short-term counselling with our Employee and Family Assistance Program.*

All employee groups will have access 24/7/365 to the Employee and Family Assistance Programme at 1-844-880-9142, for short-term counselling, as well as online tools and resources to support yourself and your family. For access to the EFAP services and resources, visit the EFAP website and sign-in using the University of Ottawa’s name.

All uOttawa community members

Emergency Support

9-1-1 (off-campus)

Protection Services (on-campus): 613-562-5411 

Good2Talk
Post-secondary student helpline 24/7/365 (bilingual): 1-866-925-5454 

Crisis Text Line
24/7 (bilingual).Text HOME to 686868 from anywhere in Canada
(For French, text PARLER to the same number).

Crisis Services Canada : call 1-833-456-4566 (24/7, bilingual) or text 45645 (between 4 p.m. and 12 a.m. ET, English only)

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