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Ontario Increases Bariatric Surgery Capacity

Archived News Release

Ontario Increases Bariatric Surgery Capacity

McGuinty Government To Treat More Patients With Obesity Under Diabetes Strategy

Ministry of Health

As part of its diabetes strategy, Ontario is further expanding access to bariatric surgery by creating a comprehensive bariatric network and boosting the number of annual surgeries to 2,085 a year by 2011/2012.

  • Expand the Humber River Regional Hospital centre of excellence to include five other Toronto sites (Toronto East General Hospital, St. Michael's Hospital, St. Joseph's Health Centre, The Hospital for Sick Children and University Health Network's Toronto Western Hospital site), now called the University of Toronto Collaborative Bariatric Surgery Program 
  • Fund an additional 615 bariatric surgeries at the new University of Toronto Collaborative Bariatric Surgery Program by 2011/2012
  • Create the province's first regional assessment and treatment centre at Windsor Regional Hospital.
  • Establish the province's first pediatric regional assessment and treatment centre at The Hospital for Sick Children to treat obesity and prevent the need for surgery in the future.
  • Create an Ontario Bariatric Network, consisting of four centres of excellence located in Toronto, Hamilton, Guelph and Ottawa and the Regional Assessment and Treatment Centre in Windsor.

Increasing access to bariatric services is part of the government's four-year, $741-million diabetes strategy to prevent, manage and treat diabetes. It will also decrease pressure on Ontario's Out-Of-Country Program, saving about $10,000 for every case done in the province.

Quick Facts

  • Today's announcement means the province is increasing bariatric surgery capacity by over 750% over the next three years.
  • Bariatric surgery is also known as gastric by-pass surgery.
  • High levels of obesity are leading to a dramatic rise in illnesses such as diabetes, heart disease, stroke, hypertension and some cancers.
  • In 2008/09 Ontario will fund 1,660 patients for out-of-country bariatric services.

Background Information

Additional Resources


“Our government is committed to helping Ontarians lead healthy lives. We're increasing the availability of bariatric surgery as well as other assessment and counselling services so that more people battling severe obesity can get the treatment they need right here in Ontario.”

David Caplan

Minister of Health and Long-Term Care

“We're pleased to become a part of the centre of excellence for bariatric surgery in Toronto. We know how important it is to have this highly specialized surgery available close to home for severely obese patients.”

Dr. Richard Reznick

MD, MEd, FRCSC, FACS, R.S. McLaughlin Professor and Chair, Department of Surgery, University of Toronto, Vice President Education, University Health Network.



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