Local family donates $1 million to Victoria hospitals amid COVID-19

Local family donates $1 million to Victoria hospitals amid COVID-19
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The Royal Jubilee Hospital is one of two Victoria hospitals to benefit from the $1 million donation.

The Victoria Hospitals Foundation (VHF) is celebrating a significant $1 million donation from the Wilson Lai (2016) Trust amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The family donated the million to be used for critical equipment in the Medical Device Reprocessing departments at the Royal Jubilee (RJH) and Victoria General (VGH) hospitals.

As an immigrant to Canada, the late Mr. Lai was a successful businessman and has left his estate to advance charitable causes in Canada, as well as overseas. 

The VHF says the 7 North surgical recovery unit in the Patient Care Centre at RJH will be renamed the Wilson S.C. Lai Surgical Unit in the coming months, to honour Mr. Lai’s generosity.

“Because of Mr. Lai’s remarkable gift, critical equipment that could no longer be serviced is now being replaced to support every surgery performed in our hospitals,” said Avery Brohman, Executive Director of the Victoria Hospitals Foundation. “We are deeply grateful for Mr. Lai’s ongoing generosity and legacy. What a humbling reminder that we have many heroes to thank for advancing healthcare in our Victoria hospitals, both in the community and on the front line.” 

This donation will fund a new cart washer for the Medical Device Reprocessing Department at RJH and a new sterilizer at VGH. Island Health identified this crucial equipment as a priority need, as it supports the cleaning and sterilizing of surgical equipment for thousands of surgeries every year. 

As donors fund 40 percent of the equipment in Victoria hospitals, donors are incredibly important to the healthcare system on the Island.

Inspired by frontline caregivers and hospital staff at RJH and VGH, the Victoria Hospitals Foundation launched Hospital Heroes of Victoria, a fundraising and awareness initiative that celebrates the city’s healthcare professionals. Funds raised through this initiative support our hospitals’ Greatest Need Fund so care teams have access to immediate support.

More recently, the VHF launched the It’s Critical campaign, a $7 million initiative to fund critical care units at RJH. Immediately, $1 million will be used to create a temporary High Acuity Unit, and the other $6 million will be used to create a permanent unit, the first of its kind on Vancouver Island. This will double to critical care capacity at the hospital.

Mr. Lai and the Lai family have been supporting healthcare in Victoria for over 15 years, funding many pieces of medical equipment and staff education to support care providers throughout Island Health. The Lai family has funded scholarships for nurses to help with advanced education for critical work in our Emergency Departments and  Intensive Care Units. To recognize this, the Lai Brothers Lecture Theatre at RJH was named after the family.

To donate to Victoria’s hospitals, visit  VHF’s website or call 250-519-1750.

Rebecca LawrenceRebecca Lawrence

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