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We are thrilled to announce the launch of our new mental health services at LMC Healthcare, with the addition of Dr. Kerris Oates to our team as the inaugural psychologist and Director of Mental Health. Dr. Kerris brings over 15 years of experience in clinical psychology, including in the intersection of mental health and chronic illness management.

About Dr. Kerris Oates

Dr. Kerris Oates combines clinical expertise with deep empathy and understanding of the unique challenges faced by individuals managing diabetes. Her extensive background includes:
  • Clinical education and practice as a psychologist
  • Experience in addressing diabetes-specific mental health issues such as diabetes distress, fear of hypoglycemia, and medication adherence
  • A strong foundation in clinical psychology and familiarity with the impact of blood sugar fluctuations on mood, energy levels, motivation, and cognition
  • Excellent communication skills and a collaborative approach to care
  • Proficiency in delivering evidence-based interventions including cognitive-behavioral techniques, emotion-focused and solution-focused therapies, and motivational interviewing, all through an anti-racist/anti-oppressive lens

Services Offered

Dr. Kerris is now accepting referrals and will be providing therapy and assessment services specifically tailored to our diabetes patients. These services will be available virtually, providing accessibility for patients from all LMC Healthcare locations across Ontario.

Importance of Integrating Mental Health and Diabetes Care

The relationship between diabetes and mental health is bidirectional and complex. By addressing both physical and psychological aspects of diabetes care, we aim to optimize outcomes and improve the overall well-being of individuals living with this condition. Integrating mental health assessment and therapy into diabetes management protocols can lead to better outcomes and enhanced quality of life for our patients.
From Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Ronnie Aronson: “Two thirds of people living with diabetes struggle with diabetes distress or depression. Our initiatives at LMC have always been focused on helping people more effectively manage their diabetes, and overcome their individual challenges. If mental health challenges have been holding some patients back, then a team of therapists available to support them will be a huge opportunity to make significant headway into their self-care.

Benefits of Psychological Assessment and Therapy

  • Psychological Assessment: Helps clarify any socioemotional conditions that may be affecting diabetes management, informing psychotropic medication management and/or the provision of therapy.
  • Therapy for Diabetes-Related Mental Health Concerns: Beneficial for patients struggling with diabetes-related distress, anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues.
Examples of specific mental health issues include:
  • Diabetes Distress: Emotional distress related to managing diabetes, including frustration, guilt, fear, and burnout.
  • Depression and Anxiety: Higher prevalence among individuals with diabetes, impacting management and control.
  • Psychological Factors and Glycemic Control: Stress, trauma, and personality traits influencing diabetes outcomes.
Dr. Kerris is dedicated to providing customized assessments and evidence-based interventions to support the mental health of our patients. She is also available to work with spouses or family members of LMC patients, either individually or together.

How to Access Services

Visit www.lmc.ca/mentalhealth
Physicians can refer patients to Dr. Kerris by clicking on “Refer a Patient.”
Patients without a physician’s referral can directly schedule a session with Dr. Kerris by clicking “Book an Appointment.”
Together, we can make a significant impact on the holistic well-being of our diabetes patients.
[email protected]
LMC Healthcare