New research centre to foster northern clinical and medical life sciences research

Research Excellence | Strategy 7: Research Support
Theme: Collaboration
UBC Life Science Lab | Photo credit: Paul H. Joseph / UBC Brand & Marketing

A new Northern Centre for Clinical Research (NCCR) is being launched to create more opportunities for clinical and biomedical research and ti improve care in the north of the province.

“Life sciences are vital to the public health-care system as new technology and treatment helps improve people’s lives,” says Adrian Dix, B.C.’s Minister of Health. “This new centre will work closely with northern and Indigenous health practitioners, patients and researchers towards a goal of better health outcomes.”

Building on existing infrastructure and partnerships, the new NCCR is a collaboration between the UBC Faculty of Medicine, the University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC) and Northern Health. The centre will be housed at the University Hospital of Northern British Columbia in Prince George with potential future satellite centres across northern B.C.

“The partnership between UNBC, UBC and Northern Health to establish this new centre is amazing to see and I applaud everyone for working together to bring clinical health research to the north,” says Anne Kang, Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Training. “Clinical research is one of the important ways we make advancements in health for people needing care, and it’s also how we support doctors and medical professionals in their training.”

The NCCR will be focused on enabling clinical trials and research as well as biomedical science that is relevant to northern, remote and Indigenous populations.

“The Northern Centre for Clinical Research will enable us to answer clinical research questions from a northern, rural and Indigenous context,” says Dr. Paul Winwood, Associate VP, Division of Medical Sciences, UNBC, and Regional Associate Dean, Northern BC, UBC Faculty of Medicine. “There has been very little clinical research done from this point of view. Through this initiative, the people of northern B.C. will have access to state-of-the-art research in terms of new therapies, investigations, and approaches to health care, including enhanced virtual care.”

The NCCR has been developed as an equal partnership between UNBC, UBC Faculty of Medicine, and Northern Health. It will build on successes in health professions education delivered in partnership in the north including the UBC Northern Medical Program, the UBC Master of Physical Therapy Program – North, and the UNBC School of Nursing. The centre will also engage with healthcare stakeholders, Indigenous communities, and patient partners across the northern B.C. region.

Please visit the Faculty of Medicine website to read the full story.

UBC is improving support for researchers across the university and in the community through enhanced core facilities, spaces and services, through Strategy 7: Research Support.