Geometric pattern of mountains

Need help immediately?

If there is an urgent safety concern, please call 9-1-1 or go to emergency at your nearest hospital.

Suicide prevention hotline: 1-800-784-2433

Call BC Crisis Line: 604-310-6789

Kids Help Phone: 1-800-668-6868

KUU-US Crisis Support Line (BC Wide Indigenous Toll Free Crisis and Support Line): 1-800-588-8717

Contemporary ECT is a safe and effective medical procedure involving the production of a controlled therapeutic seizure while the individual is asleep.

How to access

  • Check eligibility

    Potential individuals who can receive an ECT include those who:

    • are diagnosed with moderate to severe depression or other psychiatric disorder known to respond to ECT
    • are aged 19 or above
    • have a history of poor response to or intolerance to medications
    • have suboptimal response to repetitive transcranial magnetic therapy

    Factors which may exclude a person from receiving ECT: 

    • not residing within the Vancouver catchment area
    • concurrent substance use disorder
    • associated personality disorder
    • severe medical illness or frailty
    • absence of psychiatric follow up in community
  • Get a referral

    ​A psychiatrist referral is required. You will meet with an ECT psychiatrist and nurse who will assess whether this treatment is right for you. Risks and benefits will be reviewed with you and you are encouraged to ask questions.

    Our staff will complete various mental status exams and psychiatric scales with you. You may be asked to complete self-rated scales as well. You must not drive a vehicle and we highly recommend avoiding any important decision-making regarding finances or legal matters on the day of treatments.

    Download the ECT Referral Form

    View the ECT Outpatient Information

    • Must include name, referring physician, PHN, psychiatric history, including past treatment trials, medical history, current medications, associated outpatient psychiatrist
    • All individuals receiving ECT must have concurrent psychiatric follow up during the ECT treatment period.

Hours of operation

Currently closed
  • Monday:   8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
  • Tuesday:   Closed
  • Wednesday:   8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
  • Thursday:   Closed
  • Friday:   8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
  • Saturday:   Closed
  • Sunday:   Closed

Parking & transportation

The ECT Clinic at VGH is located in the Willow Pavilion building. Parking is available at the hospital parkade or at the Gordon and Leslie Diamond Building, limited street parking, City Square.

There is a wheelchair-accessible overpass from the VGH parkade at Level 4 and a crosswalk at Level 2.

Vancouver General Hospital (VGH)

Vancouver General Hospital (VGH) offers specialized health-care services to residents in Vancouver and across the province through regional programs. We provide a full range of basic and highly specialized emergency health-care and trauma services to British Columbia.

Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT)

Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) treats severe depression and other psychiatric conditions by producing a controlled therapeutic seizure while the individual is asleep.