Skip to main content Skip to search Skip to search

Psychology Mental Health

It's Not About Us

The Secret to Transforming the Mental Health and Addiction System in Canada

by (author) Todd Leader

Cathydia Press
Initial publish date
Oct 2016
Mental Health
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Oct 2016
    List Price

Add it to your shelf

Where to buy it


"It's Not About Us" is a guide to improving the client experience with the mental health and addiction system across Canada. It examines the traditional and current pathology-oriented medical model, within which all of our services are built, and looks at how that model actually prevents the transformation we need. This book presents a new way to think about what it means to be client-centred, not only at an individual level, but also at the level of system-design and operation.

About the author

Contributor Notes

Todd Leader is a psychologist and a social worker who has spent the last 26 years leading health service development and transformation, as well as health promotion, particularly in the areas of mental health, addictions, and primary health care. He has also been teaching in the Faculty of Science at Saint Mary’s University for the same 26 years. Todd has earned the Excellence in Teaching Award from the Saint Mary’s University Students’ Association, and health services under his leadership have earned two international best practice awards, and a leadership award for excellence in women’s health. He has been the President of the Public Health Association of Nova Scotia and a member of the Board of Directors of the Canadian Public Health Association. Todd has been consulted by the Canadian Centre of Substance Abuse regarding integration of mental health and addictions. At the time of writing this book, he was also the President-Elect of the Association of Psychologists of Nova Scotia. Most recently, he was appointed by the Nova Scotia Minister of Health and Wellness to the Ministerial Panel on Innovation in Mental Health and Addictions. Todd has spent his whole career working as an advocate for evidence-based, client- and community-centered programs, systems, and public policy. This book is the result of that experience.

Editorial Reviews

“As a pharmacist, I see and hear the frustrations of mental health and addictions clients every day. The unique and innovative approach in this book could serve as a template, not only for this field, but for improving the delivery of many areas of health care in Canada.” Jack Davies, Pharmacist


“In my 32-year career as a registered nurse, I have not seen any approach that is as simple, innovative, and fundamentally important to the mental health and addiction field, as the ideas presented in It’s Not About Us. This is a must-read for all nurses.” Marguerite MacDonald


“Clinicians should not be afraid to adopt this model of service delivery as it will enhance not only their clients’ experience of the service, but enable them to deliver client-centered treatment in the manner for which they were trained.”. Dr. Andrew Ashley-Smith, Psychiatrist


“This piece of work should be a blueprint guide for health change leaders in Canada” Kevin Fraser, RSW, RCC, manager - mental health and addictions.


"It's Not About Us is a breath of fresh-air that gives hope to this mental health advocate and consumer. If the system would fully adopt some of the ideas discussed in this book, lives will not only be transformed but saved. A must-read for anyone tired of talk but no real change." Sara Ramsay, mental health system consumer and advocate