Centre for Addiction and Mental Health

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The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) is a consortium of mental health clinics at several sites in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The acronym CAMH is most commonly pronounced "Cam-H".

The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health's Central Link Facility as seen from Google Street View


Among the focuses of the organization are the assessment and treatment of gender identity dysphoria, schizophrenia, mood & anxiety disorders, and personality disorders. There is also a focus on addictions to alcohol, drugs, and problem gambling at the former ARF site. CAMH also has a Law and Mental Health Programme (forensic psychiatry and forensic psychology) and is a major research center.

CAMH is a teaching hospital with central facilities located in Toronto and 26 community locations throughout the province of Ontario. CAMH is fully affiliated with the University of Toronto and is a Pan American Health Organization and World Health Organization Collaborating Centre.


CAMH was formed in 1998 as a result of the merger of the Clarke Institute of Psychiatry, the Addiction Research Foundation, the Donwood Institute and Queen Street Mental Health Centre. [1]

Clarke Institute of Psychiatry

The hospital was originally named the Clarke Institute of Psychiatry, after Charles Kirk Clarke, a pioneer in mental health in Canada.

Much of their work focuses on forensic psychology and research designed to shape public policy.[citation needed]

The former Clarke Institute building is now referred to as the College St. site of CAMH.

Addiction Research Foundation

ARF was founded in 1949. H. David Archibald, who had studied at the School of Alcohol Studies at Yale University, was hired by the Liquor Control Board of Ontario in 1949. His mandate was to determine the scope of alcoholism in Ontario. He was named executive director when ARF opened and remained in that post until 1976. Focusing initially on outpatient treatment, their first facility was Brookside Hospital in 1951, expanding to branch offices and new locations in 1954, the same year they set up in-house research. In 1961, they expanded their mission to include drugs, Alcoholism and Drug Addiction Research Foundation. In 1971, they expanded to a clinical teaching hospital called the Clinical Research and Treatment Institute. In 1978 ARF opened the School for Addiction Studies and expanded their international role in policy rdevelopment and research. Following ongoing recession in the 1990s, ARF was folded in 1998 into CAMH. [2]

Donwood Institute

Beginning in 1967, it had 47 beds and a 4-month waiting list in the 1980s. Focusing on substance abuse, boasted a 65% recovery rate for general population and an 85% recovery rate for physicians. [3]

Queen Street Mental Health Centre

This facility stands on what was once called the Provincial Lunatic Asylum, which opened on January 26, 1850. The facility had a series of names including the Toronto Lunatic Asylum and 999 Queen Street West. [4]

Reforms were made after a series of deaths at the Queen Street Mental Health Centre and newspaper accounts of involuntary drug treatment, electroshock therapy and prison-like conditions. [5][6]


CAMH has been involved in controversies in regard to treatment of transsexual patients, most notably a complaint that the Gender Identity Services for Youth program was engaging in conversion therapy.


Main Toronto Sites

  • Queen Street Site, 1001 Queen Street West, Toronto, Ontario M6J 1H4
  • Queen Street Site, 30, 40, 50, and 60 White Squirrel Way, Toronto, Ontario M6J 1H4
  • Queen Street Site, 100 and 101 Stokes Street, Toronto, Ontario M6J 1H4
  • Queen Street Site, 80 Workman Way, Toronto, Ontario M6J 1H4
  • College Street Site, 250 College Street, Toronto, Ontario M5T 1R8
  • Russell Street Site, 33 Russell Street, Toronto, Ontario, M5S 2S1

Clinical Satellite Offices

  • Archway, 1451 Queen Street West, Toronto, Ontario M6R 1A1
  • Central Link/Spectrum, 393 King Street East, Toronto, Ontario M5A 1L3
  • Dual Diagnosis Resource Service, 501 Queen Street West, Toronto, Ontario M5V 2B4
  • Dual Diagnosis Service-Peel, 30 Eglinton Avenue West, Suite 801, Mississauga, Ontario L5R 3E7
  • First Assessment Clinical Team-Peel, 30 Eglington Avenue West, Suite 801, Missisauga, Ontario L5R 3E7
  • Learning Employment Advocacy Recreation Network, 1709 St. Clair Avenue Wrst, Toronto, Ontario M6N 1J2
  • Nicotine Dependence Clinic, 175 College Street, Toronto, Ontario, M5T 1P7
  • PACE Peel, 30 Eglington Avenue West, Suite 801, Mississauga, Ontario L5R 3E7
  • Wellness Centre, 252 College Street, Toronto, Ontario M5T 1R8
  • Work, Stress, and Health Program, 455 Spadina Avenue, Suite 200, Toronto, Ontario M5S 2G8

Provincial System Support Regional Offices

CAMH also supports the addiction and mental health systems in greater provincial Ontario, and maintains offices in the below communities:

  • Toronto
  • Kingston
  • Ottawa
  • London
  • Hamilton
  • Sudbury
  • Thunder Bay
  • Penetanguishene

External links


  1. Scrivener, Leslie (February 25, 2007). Breakout at the asylum. Toronto Star
  2. Blocker JS, Fahey DM, Tyrrell IR. Alcohol and temperance in modern history: an international encyclopedia. ABC-CLIO 2003. ISBN 1576078337 pp. 3-4
  3. Shilliday, Greg (May 15, 1983). The Donwood Institute: resort of last resort. Can Med Assoc J. 1983 May 15; 128(10): 1220–1221.
  4. Everett, Barbara (2000). A Fragile Revolution: Consumers and Psychiatric Survivors Confront the Power of the Mental Health System. Wilfrid Laurier University Press. ISBN 0889203423
  5. Goar, Carol (June 13, 2008). Mental health progress and pain.Toronto Star
  6. (January 1, 2002). No straitjacket required: a growing and vocal group of psychiatric survivors argues that diagnosing mental disorders is just a way to stifle social dissent ... This Magazine