BMO is increasing access to mental health care with a C$2m donation to Royal Ottawa Health Care Group (The Royal). The donation will support the newly-established BMO Innovative Clinic for Depression. BMO’s donation is the single-largest corporate gift made to The Royal in its history. It will provide increased treatment opportunities to people living with severe depression and difficult-to-treat depression.

According to Statistics Canada, one in four Canadians is struggling with a mental health issue. Of those, one in three say their needs for mental health care are not fully met with existing services and treatments. Additionally, more than two million people in Canada experience major depression every year. One-third of these individuals experience treatment-resistant depression, meaning their depression has not yet improved despite multiple treatment trials.

The BMO Innovative Clinic for Depression will offer increased treatment access, develop additional research opportunities, and link to other available treatments and services at The Royal.

“At BMO we have a long-standing legacy of supporting community organisations and funding ground-breaking medical research,” said Victor Pellegrino, Regional President, Personal Banking, Quebec and Eastern Ontario at BMO and Board Member at The Royal.

“With this donation to The Royal and support for the BMO Innovative Clinic for Depression, more people in Eastern Ontario can make real progress in their treatment to help positively transform their lives. BMO is proud to support the innovative research and compassionate care delivered at The Royal.”

Enabling innovation, enhancing care in the community

Dr Florence Dzierszinski, President, IMHR and Vice President, Research, The Royal added: “Widespread investments in mental health research are crucial to advance the pace of translational research at a time when Canadians urgently need new approaches to care. With this significant gift, BMO is enabling innovation and enhancing care in our community. We cannot do this work without visionary leaders like BMO. The Royal is deeply committed to improving access to mental health care, including through research. The BMO Innovative Clinic for Depression will be a place where individuals can receive a novel treatment to help them live the life they want.”

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Chris Ide, President, Royal Ottawa Foundation said: “BMO and the Royal are cornerstones of the Ottawa community. We share a commitment to service, stability, integrity and trust. These shared values have led the bank and its leadership to support and advocate for mental health care and research at The Royal generously over the last 10 years. We are deeply grateful.”