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The Bariatric Medical Program provides comprehensive medical care led by an interdisciplinary team. The focus of this program is the non-surgical treatment of obesity and obesity-related health conditions, safe weight management, and healthy lifestyle changes. 

In order to be referred to the Medical Program, patients will require a physician's referral.  

Patients who meet the eligibility criteria are assigned to a Bariatric Centre of Excellence (BCoE) or Regional Assessment and Treatment Centre (RATC). 

Eligible patients will be contacted directly by their assigned bariatric centre to attend an orientation session, followed by comprehensive screening and assessment by the interdisciplinary bariatric team to assess their appropriateness for a treatment plan. Intensive education and nutritional counselling are provided. Following the completion of the medical treatment plan, patients are monitored and scheduled for routine follow-ups for a period of 1 year. 

Eligibility: 

  • 18 years of age and older (allow referrals at age >=17.5 years) 
  • BMI greater than, or equal to 35 
  • BMI greater than or equal to 30, but less than 35. With at least one of the following comorbidities (as determined by your physician):  
  • Complicated Type II diabetes mellitus 
  • Idiopathic intracranial hypertension 
  • Poorly controlled hypertension 

Ineligibility (not limited to): 

  • Current drug or alcohol dependency (within 6 months of referral) 
  • Recent major cancer (life threatening, within last 2 years) with active treatment where caloric restriction might exacerbate the condition 
  • Untreated or inadequately treated psychiatric illness 

Types of Medical Programs

There are three types of Medical Programs that may be offered to patients through the OBN. For all Medical Programs, the focus is to help patients achieve medically acceptable weight loss in order to improve their co-morbidities and quality of life. The programs focus on helping patients achieve a healthier state of wellness by providing knowledge and life skills to change their eating and coping behaviours, and develop alternative lifestyles that promote healthy eating, physical activity, and healthy living.

The appropriate treatment option for the patient is determined by the interdisciplinary team of bariatric experts at each centre. Program duration varies depending on the treatment plan, and centres follow patients for a period of 1 year.

Bariatric Medical Program is comprised of:

  • Meal Replacement/Behavioral Modification Program
  • One to One Program

Medical Program Features

The OBN has established standardized care paths based on current evidence and best practice that outline the minimal tests/assessments required for all Medical Program bariatric patients in Ontario. Assessments, appointments and treatment plans may vary from person to person, depending on the individual and their health care needs. 

  • Program Orientation (Group Session)  
  • Interdisciplinary Bariatric Team Assessments 
  • Routine blood work and additional diagnostic testing based on patients' individual medical needs 
  • Behavioural modification/education classes (up to 24 people) are closed groups for patients only and are facilitated by the clinic’s social worker, registered dietitian, psychologists and kinesiologist; as appropriate 
  • Patients may be on a low-calorie meal replacement at patients own expense for 6 to 12 weeks depending on BMI, after which time, patients are slowly reintegrated back onto food 
  • Your treatment plan could also include one-on-one intervention, based on individual needs 
  • Weight is measured each week 
  • Attendance is mandatory 
  • Follow up assessments at the following time intervals  
  • 6 months  
  • 1 year 
  • The program will incorporate use of telemedicine as appropriate 

Frequently Asked Questions

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