• BMO's $2 million donation will go towards the BMO Innovative Clinic for Depression for people living with difficult-to-treat depression

OTTAWA, ON, May 30, 2023 /CNW/ - BMO is increasing access to mental health care with a $2 million donation to The Royal Ottawa Health Care Group (The Royal) to 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 and will provide increased treatment opportunities to people living with severe depression and difficult-to-treat depression.

BMO makes single-largest corporate gift to The Royal for BMO Innovative Clinic for Depression Donation (CNW Group/BMO Financial Group)

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 organizations and funding ground-breaking medical research," says 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." 

"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," says Dr. Florence Dzierszinski, President, IMHR and Vice President, Research, The Royal. "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."

"BMO and The Royal are cornerstones of the Ottawa community," says Chris Ide, President, Royal Ottawa Foundation. "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."

"By providing novel forms of treatment, the BMO Innovative Clinic for Depression will give hope to those with difficult-to-treat depression," says Dr. Jennifer Phillips, Interim Scientific Director, The Royal's Institute of Mental Health Research (IMHR). "Moreover, in the community, BMO has demonstrated their deep commitment to improving the lives of people challenged by mental illness."

About BMO Financial Group

BMO Financial Group is the eighth largest bank in North America by assets, with total assets of $1.25 trillion as of April 30, 2023. Serving customers for 200 years and counting, BMO is a diverse team of highly engaged employees providing a broad range of personal and commercial banking, wealth management, global markets and investment banking products and services to over 13 million customers across Canada, the United States, and in select markets globally. Driven by a single purpose, to Boldly Grow the Good in business and life, BMO is committed to driving positive change in the world, and making progress for a thriving economy, sustainable future and inclusive society.

About The Royal

The Royal is one of Canada's foremost mental health care, teaching, and research hospitals and is home to the Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre, the Brockville Mental Health Centre, the University of Ottawa Institute of Mental Health and the Royal Ottawa Foundation for Mental Health. Our purpose is to expand access, hope and new possibilities for people with mental health and substance use health needs through the convergence of client and family-oriented care, science, education and lived expertise. Click here to learn more about The Royal, our services, and our impact.

BMO makes single-largest corporate gift to The Royal for BMO Innovative Clinic for Depression Donation (CNW Group/BMO Financial Group)

SOURCE BMO Financial Group

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