Canvas Health is a community mental health clinic (CMHC) with a broad level of community involvement and many innovative programs. We celebrated our 50th year in 2019. Our staff enjoy training and interns are accepted as valued colleagues. We foster an atmosphere in which we push interns toward excellence in practice while offering support and encouragement. Canvas Health serves persons with a wide variety of presenting conditions and places emphasis on developing interns' confidence and competence in serving persons with serious and persistent mental illness and children with severe emotional and behavior disturbance.
Canvas Health welcomes applicants of diverse cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds, ages, physical abilities, gender identities, sexual orientations, and religious/spiritual beliefs. The agency and the training program have a creative and committed focus on diversity training and cultural humility. We have expanded our offerings into other metro counties and are serving a broader range of diverse persons; we have developed clinic documentation in Spanish. Interns and supervisors complete a culture-sharing exercise toward the beginning of the training year, and activities designed to promote multicultural awareness are provided throughout the internship. A process/ countertransference group - facilitated by a staff person who is not in a supervisory role - is also made available to interns to nurture a safe space for self-reflection.
Child/adolescent-track interns complete a 12-month rotation in a home-based family therapy program serving seriously emotionally disturbed children and adolescents. Adult-track interns complete a 6- to 12-month rotation in an outpatient adult day treatment program (varies based on clinic need and intern availability). Standard experiences for all interns include a year-long 1) assessment rotation, 2) outpatient therapy rotation and 3) adherent DBT rotation. Canvas Health focuses on evidence-based treatments and assessments, integrating science with practice.
Canvas Health has a strong role in evaluation services to the court and social services system, and interns are trained in doing many types of evaluations used by county departments, as well as for other internal and community needs. We have a busy FASD and neurodevelopmental clinic and routinely receive referrals from psychiatry, primary care, other mental health agencies and self-referred community members. Some members of our training committee routinely complete forensic evaluations (child protection, competency, certification to be tried as adults, psychosexual), and there may be opportunities to observe their work. Many interns have had the opportunity to complete psychological assessment of incarcerated individuals.
A large base of clinical data from the agency's outcomes instruments is available for research projects. Interns and staff presented research using this database at APA from 2010 to 2015. In 2013 and 2016 interns and staff presented at the Collaborative Family Healthcare Association conference. We foster opportunities for outcomes measurement and program evaluation.