The Coalition against Morbid Obesity favorably receives the MSSS action plan on bariatric surgery

    MONTREAL, May 15 /CNW Telbec/ - Jennifer Schultz and Josée Roy,
cofounders of the Coalition against Morbid Obesity (,
reacted positively to the Quebec action plan on bariatric surgery tabled today
by Quebec's Health and Social Services Minister Yves Bolduc. "This is the
action plan we were promised two years ago. At long last, we have a health
minister who recognizes the importance of bariatric surgery, the only
treatment for people suffering from morbid obesity," declared Mrs. Roy. "As he
already had outlined it during the April 23 parliamentary session, bariatric
surgery is an issue close to this heart," she added.

    Universal access

    "At a recent meeting with Dr. Yves Bolduc, he readily acknowledged that,
in Quebec, bariatric surgery was the only type of surgery that did not benefit
from universal access - a situation that needed to be corrected," affirmed
Mrs. Schultz. "Accessibility and free healthcare are the two fundamental
principles on which is based the MSSS action plan, and that is fair and
non-discriminatory towards the morbidly obese people of Quebec," said Mrs.

    A role to play

    The Coalition against Morbid Obesity was created in 2007 to increase
awareness of the issue of morbid obesity and to foster better access to
bariatric surgery in Quebec. "Minister Bolduc recognizes the major
contribution of the Coalition against Morbid Obesity in raising awareness and
providing information. This recognition that we greatly appreciate paves the
way to a collaboration between the Coalition and the MSSS at a critical
moment: the introduction of the action plan on bariatric surgery," explained
Mrs. Schultz.

    Public waiting list

    The action plan clearly indicates that the objective is to improve access
to bariatric surgery considering that the present waiting period can extend up
to seven years. "To this end, we would like to see bariatric surgery waiting
lists posted on the MSSS Web site, just like it is done for other types of
surgery," concluded Mrs. Schultz.

    Morbid obesity

    Morbid obesity is the starting point for different types of diseases that
are often fatal, such as arterial hypertension, Type 2 diabetes, or heart
disease. An individual's obesity level can be evaluated by means of the body
mass index (BMI), which is calculated by dividing the person's weight by his
or her height squared (Kg/m2). Morbid obesity corresponds to a BMI higher than
or equal to 40, or higher than or equal to 35 if accompanied by comorbidities.

    Bariatric surgery

    According to the World Health Organization (WHO), bariatric surgery is
considered to be the only effective treatment for morbid obesity. Bariatric
surgery includes a series of techniques that are based on two intervention
principles: gastric bypass (reduced volume) and intestinal malabsorption
(derivation). In Québec in 2005, the Agence d 'évaluation des technologies et
des modes d' intervention en santé (AETMIS) tabled a report entitled "Surgical
Treatment of Morbid Obesity - Update", which reviews all of the bariatric
surgery techniques. The AET MIS recommended establishing an action plan in
Québec to define the need for bariatric surgery and devise ways to respond to

    About the Coalition against Morbid Obesity

    Created in February 2007, the Coalition against Morbid Obesity is a
non-profit, Québec-based organization that draws on the strength of
association to increase awareness of the issue of morbid obesity and to foster
better access to bariatric surgery in Québec. Its signature, "Weight that
kills", expresses the dramatic situation that is experienced by people who are
suffering from morbid obesity. As its name indicates, this disease leads to a
faster death for those who are afflicted. For more information, visit

For further information:

For further information: Hélène Hains, (514) 982-0308, ext. 221, Cell:
(514) 776-9577,

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