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Canfor donation supports new lab at UHNBC

The University Hospital of Northern B.C. will soon have a dedicated molecular diagnostic lab, thanks to a $100,000 donation by Canfor to the Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation.
Canfor donation supports new lab at UHNBC
Canfor vice-presidents Kevin Horsnell and Kevin Anderson presented a $100,000 cheque to the Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation, to develop a dedicated molecular diagnostic lab at UHNBC.

The University Hospital of Northern B.C. will soon have a dedicated molecular diagnostic lab, thanks to a $100,000 donation by Canfor to the Spirit of the North Healthcare Foundation.

The foundation raised approximately $300,000 in total to support the initiative, through events including the annual Festival of Trees. The lab will increase testing capacity for COVID-19 and influenza, and allow more rapid testing to allow clinicians to make treatment decisions.

“We are incredibly thankful to so many donors who stepped up to see that this will become a reality,” foundation CEO Judy Neiser said in a press release. “When Canfor went one step further to support the final amount needed we were so grateful. They are a big employer in the region and this has had an impact on their workforce and their families too. It really is a big statement for the region of how much they truly care.”

UHNBC pathologist and lead physician Dr. Randall Dumont said molecular diagnostic testing is considered the gold standard in the field.

The major lab equipment is already on site, and Northern Health is proceeding quickly to get the lab operational.

“The pandemic has illustrated how quickly infections can spread," Canfor vice-president Kevin Anderson said in a press release. "Efficient testing and diagnostics are also key components to limiting infections in our communities, which is why we are pleased to support the molecular diagnostics lab."