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Turia Delighted With Funding For Life-Saving Weight-Loss Operations

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Tariana Turia
Tariana Turia

Associate Health Minister Tariana Turia has announced that up to 300 additional weight-loss operations will be funded over the next four years.

"This is a huge step in enhancing the longetivity and the quality of life for New Zealanders who suffer the adverse impacts of obesity" said Mrs Turia.

The extra 300 operations will provide bariatric surgery for approximately 75 New Zealanders a year for the next four years.

This additional funding will increase by more than a quarter the current number of these operations done each year, and will cost $2 million per year.

There will also be some additional procedures which precede and follow on from successful bariatric operations and are included in the funding package.

Mrs Turia says as Associate Minister with responsibility for diabetes, she is gravely concerned about the dire effects of the prevalence of obesity amongst New Zealanders. "This surgery can improve quality of life and reduce the costs and harm from preventable disease that severe obesity causes.

"It's clear that for some people surgery remains the only realistic option for them to prevent serious health problems further down the track.

"This is a significant investment in the health and wellbeing of people who struggle everyday with weight related health problems.

"We know that the surgery also needs to be combined with significant lifestyle changes to gain the optimum benefit from it.

"Even with the increase in surgery many people with morbid obesity will not receive an operation and other lifestyle measures such as diet and exercise remain very important," says Mrs Turia.

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