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Shoppers Drug Mart invests $2.5 million in UNB to create innovative, community-based health care solutions

Author: UNB Newsroom

Posted on May 25, 2022

Category: UNB Fredericton , UNB Saint John

Shoppers Drug Mart and the McKenna Institute at the University of New Brunswick are embarking on a collaborative journey to create innovative and patient-centric solutions to help address some of the health care gaps in the province.

Shoppers Drug Mart has committed $2.5 million over five years to the university to identify, build and test new models of health care for communities in need using pharmacies and new digital tools to make health care more accessible and convenient.

“Our purpose is to help Canadians live life well, and that means providing them with the services and support that they need to successfully and conveniently manage their overall health,” said Jeff Leger, president of Shoppers Drug Mart. “This initiative with UNB means that we are steps closer to improving access to care for New Brunswick residents through pharmacy resources, particularly for women and those in marginalized groups.”

Shortages in health care staffing and resources, exacerbated by the pandemic, have necessitated further collaboration amongst health care professionals, including pharmacists, particularly on new ways to deliver community-based primary care. This initiative, led Shoppers Drug Mart and UNB, will identify and address specific needs or gaps in health care and design solutions to help to improve health outcomes. The goal will to be develop prototypes that could be deployed nationally, where relevant.

"This partnership is a unique opportunity for New Brunswickers to be on the forefront of digital health innovation in Canada,” said Hon. Frank McKenna, founder of the McKenna Institute at UNB. “We are excited to work alongside our partners at Shoppers Drug Mart to explore what an enhanced pharmacy experience can be in our local communities before scaling to serve others nationally.”

About the McKenna Institute

The McKenna Institute fuels economic growth and social progress by advancing the use of digital technologies in New Brunswick. The Institute collaborates to accelerate our talent pipeline, nurture ideas and enable all New Brunswick communities to thrive in a digital world.

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Photo: (L-R) Dr. Petra Hauf, UNB’s vice-president Saint John, the Hon. Dorothy Shephard, Minister of Health for the Province of New Brunswick, Jeff Leger, president of Shoppers Drug Mart, the Hon. Frank McKenna, founder of the McKenna Institute, Dr. Paul J. Mazerolle, UNB’s president and vice-chancellor, and Adrienne O’Pray, director of the McKenna Institute.