Bariatric SurgeryObesity rates in Ontario are higher than they have ever been, with over 150,000 people eligible for intervention, and more than 3000 people per year actively seeking treatment for their condition. The rise in obesity is leading to a rise in obesity related illnesses such as diabetes, heart disease, stroke, hypertension and some cancers. Bariatric surgery has been proven to improve these conditions with weight loss.
As part of the Ontario Diabetes Strategy, the Ontario government has improved access to treatment for Ontarians who are struggling with severe obesity by investing over $75 million over the next three years to increase Ontarios capacity for providing bariatric services, including surgery. This will increase the number of bariatric surgeries performed in Ontario to 2,085 a year by 2011/12 through the development of comprehensive Bariatric Centres of Excellence across Ontario. St. Joseph's Healthcare Hamilton was chosen as the lead institution for this initiative, and will provide up to 450 surgeries per year by 2012.
In 2009, the Ontario Bariatric Network was developed in support of this commitment. The success of this network and the Bariatric program is due to its Advisory Board, comprised of clinical and administrative specialists from each of the Bariatric Centres of Excellence within the province. The Advisory Board was established to promote Collective Decisions and Collaborative Action. To learn more, please visit www.ontariobariatricnetwork.ca
Additionally, in support of this strategy the new Ontario-based Bariatric Registry was developed a centralized referral process, to collect standard referral data on all patients, and direct their referral to their nearest bariatric centre based on their residential postal code. Referrals will ONLY be accepted by a referring physician through this Bariatric Registry. For more information, please visit www.bariatricregistry.ca
The Bariatric Team here at St. Josephs Healthcare Hamilton consists of Surgeons, General Internal Medicine Physicians, Endocrinologist, Psychiatrist, Nurses, Social Worker, Dietitian, Clerks and other physicians as required. Patients who are thinking about having surgery must have a thorough medical and psychological assessment and meet the following criteria:
- Meet the BMI criteria of greater than 35 with co-morbidities or,
- A BMI greater than 40
- Have tried other weight loss programs
- Be motivated and willing to make eating and lifestyle changes
- Be willing to work with the multidisciplinary team
- Participate in long-term follow-up
Contact information for the program is below. Please send referrals through registry as above.
Bariatric Surgery Program
St. Joseph's Healthcare Hamilton
50 Charlton Ave. E.
Hamilton, ON L8N 4A6
Telephone: 905-522-1155 Ext. 33240