Expansion Of Bariatric Surgery In Ontario Saving Millions Of Dollars
McGuinty Government Providing Care Closer To Home
Ontario's expansion of bariatric surgeries, also known as gastric bypass, is saving the province tens of millions of taxpayer dollars each year while providing care closer to home for patients.
As part of Ontario's Diabetes strategy to prevent, manage, and treat diabetes, the province created a bariatric treatment network which features four Centres of Excellence and four Regional Assessment and Treatment Centres. This expansion has dramatically reduced the need to send Ontarians out-of-country for surgery - saving about $10,000 for every bariatric procedure done here at home.
By eliminating the need for patients to go out-of-country, Ontario will save an estimated $45 million in 2010/11 and an estimated $21 million at minimum in 2011/12. These savings will be achieved while still expanding the number of bariatric surgeries performed, growing by 750 per cent -- from 245 in 2007/08 to an estimated 2,085 in 2011/2012.
As part of the Open Ontario Plan, the province is committed to eliminating waste and finding savings that can be used in our schools and for the health care system on which Ontario families rely. The government is also reducing the deficit with a plan in place to eliminate it completely by 2018.
- The province is reducing the amount of paper and office equipment it uses, which is expected to save $15.6 million over the next two years.
- Better use of technology and stricter travel rules helped reduce government expenses by $30 million last year, and is expected to save an additional $10 million this year.
- The province recently announced the merger of two agencies - Infrastructure Ontario and Ontario Realty Corporation - which will save Ontarians about $5 million annually.
“We're helping Ontarians to lead healthier lives while saving taxpayers millions of dollars each year. High levels of obesity are leading to dramatic rises in serious chronic illnesses like diabetes, heart disease, hypertension and some cancers. The increased availability of bariatric services in Ontario means more people battling severe obesity can get the treatment they need right here at home.”