Archived News Releases

News Release - Manitoba

June 13, 2013

New Technology will Ensure Safety of Chemotherapy Drugs for Manitobans who need them

Advanced, High-tech System will Reduce Risk of Error, Increase Productivity: Oswald, Bjornson

A new, state-of-the-art system developed by a Winnipeg-based company will prepare chemotherapy drugs with a high degree of precision, helping CancerCare Manitoba enhance patient and staff safety, Health Minister Theresa Oswald and Entrepreneurship, Training and Trade Minister Peter Bjornson announced today.

“The new RIVA system, used to prepare complex chemotherapy treatments, will help to prevent errors and free up pharmacists’ and nurses’ time,” said Oswald.  “That kind of accuracy will bring much-needed comfort to Manitoba families dealing with cancer.”

The advanced RIVA technology performs multiple checks to ensure dose accuracy and appropriate mixing of chemotherapy drugs.  RIVA systems in operation around the world have already prepared nearly two million doses safely and accurately.  CancerCare Manitoba will become the third facility in Canada to install the high-tech RIVA system.

“This state-of-the-art technology prepares chemotherapy drugs safely and improves accuracy in a clean and contained environment,” said Dr. Dhali Dhaliwal, CEO, CancerCare Manitoba.  “The benefits to cancer patients in terms of safety and peace of mind are immeasurable, and the implementation of this technology reinforces CancerCare Manitoba’s position as a national leader in cancer treatment, including chemotherapy safety.”

The new RIVA system at CancerCare, along with the sophisticated software and ongoing support, is valued at nearly $2.5 million.  RIVA was developed by Intelligent Hospital Systems, a Winnipeg‑based global health-care technology company that has doubled its local workforce in just a few years.

“This investment is part of the Manitoba government’s plan for steady and strong economic growth that expands our capacity to compete internationally,” said Bjornson.  “The fact that this technology, developed right here in Winnipeg, will be used to help Manitoba families when they need it most, makes this especially good news for our province.”

Intelligent Hospital Systems president and CEO Dr. Niels Erik Hansen congratulated the Manitoba government on taking this step.

“RIVA provides an important safeguard for patient care when there simply is no room for error; it sets a new standard for patient and medication safety,” said Hansen.  “We are delighted that the Manitoba government is implementing this important technology at CancerCare, while also helping to support the growth of a hometown Manitoba company in Canadian and international markets.”

The RIVA system is expected to be operational at CancerCare Manitoba’s Health Sciences Centre location by the end of summer.

Oswald also noted the Manitoba government and the CancerCare Manitoba Foundation supported the acquisition of the new system.

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