VANCOUVER, B.C. – Today, four major charities in British Columbia have joined forces to establish the B.C. COVID-19 Combat Collective to raise funds for the province’s world-leading research teams. The charities include: BCCDC Foundation for Public Health, BC Cancer Foundation, VGH & UBC Hospital Foundation and the University of British Columbia. Funds raised will support B.C.’s leading experts who are on the global stage in researching innovative solutions to detect, neutralize and combat COVID-19. 

In the face of crisis, research is the key to curb the current threat and understand COVID-19's long-term implications, protecting us from future risks.

Leaders have been assembled from various specialities including basic science, public health, innovative testing and treatment development to join the B.C. COVID-19 Combat Collective.

Together, this powerhouse of scientific experts can help prevent future outbreaks and save the lives of our most vulnerable. Breakthroughs in B.C. will benefit British Columbians first with rapid sharing around the world. They will tackle the virus from every angle, focusing on one outcome: combat COVID-19 and take back tomorrow.

Donor funding will support a range of promising research projects currently underway in B.C., including:

BCCDC FOUNDATION FOR PUBLIC HEALTH

Public health experts at the BCCDC are leading new population health research in a provincial effort to prevent the spread of COVID-19 by evaluating the public health response and assessing susceptibility and immunity of B.C.’s general population. This research will enable experts to develop rapid-response public health measures, including testing and risk mitigation for vulnerable populations, to prepare for subsequent waves of the virus and to strengthen readiness for future pandemics.

"I'm proud to represent the BC COVID-19 Combat Collective, an innovative collaboration that elevates the role that philanthropy can play in driving vital COVID-19 prevention, testing, and treatment research across BC. Among the four partners, the BCCDC's prevention research will shape the public health response, ensuring we can prevent transmission, gather evidence about infection in the general population, and prepare for future waves and outbreaks. This project and the other critical research efforts to enhance testing and treatments, as well as the commitment between these dedicated charities and donors, will help experts save lives. This collective demonstrates the need for collaboration and amplifies our continued commitment to address COVID-19 together."

- Dr. Bonnie Henry, provincial health officer, Government of B.C.

 

BC CANCER FOUNDATION

BC Cancer experts are working to combat COVID-19 by decoding the disease and developing innovative testing and treatments, including a study that applies the team’s expertise in cancer detection to rapidly test for coronavirus by using four innovative technologies. This includes light and breath samples.

"Combating COVID-19 is essential for all of us, especially our vulnerable cancer population. World-leading researchers at BC Cancer are deploying expertise in genomics, disease detection and treatment development to accelerate innovative solutions alongside our provincial colleagues to halt the spread.”

-     Dr. Francois Benard, senior executive director, research, BC Cancer

 

VGH & UBC HOSPITAL FOUNDATION

VGH is participating in a national clinical trial called CONCOR-1 to test a possible treatment for COVID-19 using plasma from people who have recovered from the disease. It is expected that the first VGH patients will be treated by the end of the month with this therapy.

 

“I’m so very proud of the efforts of the public and our frontline public health teams who have helped prevent spread of the virus and flatten the curve here in our region. But as we continue to respond to COVID-19, we know we need to learn much more about this new virus and that’s why support for the COMBAT COVID-19 Collective is so important. Our research experts here can make a significant contribution to prevent deaths, not only here in B.C. but around the world. I’m asking for your support and I want to thank you as we work to take back tomorrow.”

-     Dr. Patricia Daly, chief medical health officer, Vancouver Coastal Health

 

UBC

UBC is investing in the infrastructure needed to support the COVID-19 research community, such as a provincial biobank and clinical trial networks, to quickly and effectively translate research from across BC into new treatments and to prepare for future pandemics. UBC’s researchers, who work in labs and clinics across the province, are redirecting their expertise to the search for drugs and treatments that will save the lives of patients suffering with the disease today.

“UBC researchers are prepared to work with our partners across the province to find solutions to the multifaceted issues caused by COVID-19—just like they did in 2003, when UBC led on the development of a vaccine for SARS. As BC’s leading research university, we are uniquely positioned to house crucial infrastructure that can enable and accelerate the critical work being done by our province’s top researchers. We are honoured to work together to combat this virus to defend the health of our citizens and our way of life."

-     Santa J. Ono, president and vice chancellor, University of British Columbia

 

To combat COVID-19, we need your help today.

Our governments are making unprecedented investments in the fight against COVID-19, but they can't do it alone. Philanthropy will make the difference in uncovering rapid solutions.

Give today to support B.C.'s leading experts and advance critical research to combat our generation's worst public health emergency. You can support researchers as they mobilize with others from around the world to find real solutions and prevent the spread of COVID-19.

To donate, please visit: www.chim.pn/BC-COVID19-Combat-Collective

Your donation will play a crucial part in halting the spread of COVID-19 and saving lives in B.C. and around the world.

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For media enquiries, please contact:

Hayley Judge
Senior marketing & communications specialist
BC Cancer Foundation
hayley.judge@bccancer.bc.ca
D: 604-764-0666