Engineering Science, Computing Science

Research endowment links SFU, Fraser Health as medical technology leaders

January 29, 2013

Simon Fraser University and Fraser Health Authority are poised to become leaders in medical research and technology innovation with the launch of a $5.25 million Surrey Memorial Hospital Foundation B.C. Leadership Chair in Multimodal Technology for Healthcare Innovation.

The Hon. Stephanie Cadieux, Minister of Children and Family Development, today announced the appointment of Simon Fraser University neuroscientist Dr. Ryan D’Arcy to the Leadership Chair.

With a goal of improving the lives of patients through innovation, D’Arcy will combine health research and technology by linking the Faculty of Applied Sciences at SFU with the medical expertise at Surrey Memorial Hospital and elsewhere in the Fraser Health region.

D’Arcy brings a focus on neurotechnology to further understand the brain and help patients with devastating brain illness and traumatic brain injuries. He will lead the development of a diverse and prosperous medical technology sector, starting with neurotechnologies for advanced diagnosis and treatment at Surrey Memorial Hospital.

Born and raised in B.C., D’Arcy was attracted home from his role as the head and senior research officer of the Institute for Biodiagnostics in Halifax, Nova Scotia, a world-renowned Institute that he founded in 2002.

During his time there, D’Arcy raised over $50 million in investment and established a critical mass of scientists, engineers, and clinicians focused on health technology products to help neurological patients.

He has been instrumental in leading the development of devices, including:

  • the Halifax Consciousness Scanner, a portable scanner to evaluate brain status following trauma;
  • brain imaging technology applications to help Captain Trevor Greene rewire his ability to walk following an attack in Afghanistan; and
  • the world’s first virtual reality rehearsal for removal of a brain tumour.

The Chair was created through a partnership with $2.25 million in funding provided by government’s Leading Edge Endowment Fund (LEEF), and SFU and Surrey Memorial Hospital Foundation each contributing $1.5 million. Fraser Health Authority is developing lab space for the Chair position, and will provide access to clinical facilities and resources at Surrey Memorial Hospital, the Jim Pattison Outpatient Care and Surgery Centre, and other healthcare facilities.

Quotes from partners involved in developing the Surrey Memorial Hospital Foundation B.C. Leadership Chair in Multimodal Technology for Healthcare Innovation:

  • John Yap, Minister of Advanced Education, Innovation and Technology
    “Our province is blessed with an abundance of home-grown talent that drives our technology sector. That, along with our investments in world-class research and innovation, has helped make British Columbia a magnet for talent the likes of Dr. D’Arcy. I’m delighted to see him return to his home province to continue his world-class work and play a lead role in developing new medical technologies right here in B.C.”

  • Andrew Petter, President and Vice-Chancellor, Simon Fraser University
    “The support of the Province's Leading Edge Endowment Fund has enabled SFU to forge a unique partnership with Surrey Memorial Hospital Foundation and to bring a world-class innovator in medical technology to B.C. This welcome development is further evidence of SFU's commitment to engaging research for community benefit."
  • Jane Adams, President & CEO, Surrey Memorial Hospital Foundation
    “Surrey Memorial Hospital Foundation is proud to partner with the provincial government, SFU and Fraser Health to bring the best of research and innovation to Surrey. Dr. D’Arcy’s work has the potential to bring important new medical devices to market very quickly, benefiting our economy as well as helping doctors better diagnose and treat brain injuries in patients of all ages.”

  • Nigel Murray, President and CEO, Fraser Health
    “Dr. D'Arcy brings great passion, drive, and applied research talent to Fraser Health. We are fortunate to have him leading health sciences and innovation at Surrey Memorial Hospital and thank the Province of B.C., Simon Fraser University and the Surrey Memorial Hospital Foundation for making this incredible appointment possible."




Karen Lee, Faculty of Applied Sciences, 778.782.8923;
Baljinder Jacques, Ministry of Advanced Education, 250.356.7293;
Anne McLaughlin, Surrey Memorial Hospital Foundation, 604.788.0018;
Tasleem Juma, Fraser Health Authority, Pager 604.450.7811;
Marianne Meadahl, PAMR, 778.782.9017;