Centralized Access and Rapid Engagement Service (CARES)

CARES formerly known as Intake provides screening, assessment, treatment recommendations and referrals to Island Health Mental Health and Substance Use and external community programs in the Victoria area.  The intake team includes professionals with backgrounds in social work, nursing, substance use treatment and psychology, with psychiatrist support to make referral decisions. 

Contact Us

Phone:  250-519-3485 

Fax:  250-381-3222


Access Mental Health & Substance Use Services

Mental Health Programs require a referral from your family physician, walk-in clinic or nurse practitioner. Please fax a completed physician's MHSU Referral Form to 250-381-3222.


Substance Use Services are initiated by arriving in person at 1119 Pembroke during business hours (or 1125 Pembroke on evenings and weekends) to complete a Client/Patient Questionnaire. If you would like, you can print the Client/Patient Questionnaire then fill it out and drop off the completed form to the Pembroke campus. Appointments are not booked until a Client/Patient Questionnaire is received and reviewed.   

Substance Use referrals can also be initiated by a doctor faxing a MHSU Referral Form  to 250-381-3222.


Physicians can consult with a specialist prior to submitting a MHSU referral via Rapid Access to Consultative Expertise (RACE) or by downloading the RACE App or by consulting with a Mental Health or Substance Use Intake worker by calling 250-519-3485.