WINNIPEG -- A new partnership between the Health Sciences Centre Foundation, the Province of Manitoba, and Transplant Manitoba will help increase the number of kidney transplants that can be offered.

The Health Sciences Centre Transplant Wellness Centre was officially revealed on Friday, with Health Minister Heather Stefanson saying the building will benefit people who need transplants.

“By bringing these care services together, the new Centre will expand transplant capacity, reduce patient bottlenecks, and significantly reduce kidney transplant wait times,” Stefanson said in a statement.

The new centre cost $4.5 million, with money coming from the province and two anonymous donors, and quadruples the size of the current space, which was previously spread out throughout HSC.

According to a news release, the expanded space will be able to increase kidney transplants in Manitoba from 60 to 80 per year. In addition, staff will no longer need to wait for items such as portable bladder scanners or blood pressure monitors.

“This was a sorely needed place,” said Dr. David Rush, medical director of the adult kidney program with Transplant Manitoba. “Us being altogether makes it so efficient that we can see a lot of patients in less time than we could otherwise."

In addition to kidney patients, the new space will help meet the needs of lung and liver transplant patients. It is also estimated the centre will save $63,000 annually by getting people off of dialysis sooner.