Expansion of UBC’s medical school to the BC Interior could not have been more timely for The Colin & Lois Pritchard Foundation. The foundation was just getting launched and funding priorities established when news of the Southern Medical Program was announced.
Colin Pritchard, retired lawyer and UBC alumnus was eager to support medical education and research opportunities in the region, in particular those connected with his alma mater. After receiving two life saving operations in recent years, Pritchard and his family recognize the importance of excellent medical care and the role education plays in its delivery.
“Our family believes strongly in supporting education and training for students and health care professionals in the Interior,” say Pritchard. “We are most encouraged that many of these graduating students will return to the region as practicing physicians to serve the health cares needs of our communities.”
Colin & Lois Pritchard and their daughter Alison Moscrop, foundation director have provided a tremendous amount of support for the program and its students:
- Funding the state-of-the-art Pritchard Simulation Centre which provides a highly-advanced learning environment for medical students and residents and much needed resource for interprofessional training for Interior Health staff;
- Funding high dose brachytherapy research with the BC Cancer Agency of which a significant portion is allocated for student research opportunities;
- Supporting the expansion of TeleHealth throughout the Interior Health region developing new learning avenues for students;
- Creating a bursary fund for students graduating from the region’s high schools and universities which was matched entirely by a private donor.
“We really enjoy and value our relationship with the university and are always looking for new opportunities to support their efforts,” says Moscrop. “We also recognize the talent coming from the local universities and would love to retain some of these smart, capable individuals to stay and practice in the community.”
Through the foundation’s support, the Faculty of Medicine has been able to enhance partnerships and foster new collaborations with the Interior Health Authority, Kelowna General Hospital Foundation, and the BC Cancer Agency.
“We are extremely fortunate to have Colin, Lois, and Alison as members of the Southern Medical Program community,” says Dr. Allan Jones, Regional Associate Dean, Interior. “Their support has truly enriched the learning environment for countless students and professionals and will inevitably help improve the quality of health care in our region.”