Jun 30, 2017 | By Tess

The provincial government of Quebec has announced plans to invest nearly 3 million CAD ($2.31M) for the establishment of a medical 3D printing center. The facility, to be located in Quebec’s capital city—Quebec City—will be the first of its kind in the Canadian province.

According to a story by the Journal de Québec, the medical 3D printing center is being realized through a partnership between the Quebec Center of Industrial Research (CRIQ) and the Québec-Université Laval hospital center (CHU). The aim of establishing the facility will be to improve medical devices and technologies, and offer the benefits of 3D printing in the medical field to Quebecois patients.

Additive manufacturing technologies are playing an increasingly significant role in the medical industry, as they are enabling the creation of customized prosthetics, advanced implants, and more. With bioprinting on the rise as well, it could soon be possible to 3D print such organic materials as human tissue, skin, and—down the line—even organs.

In Quebec City, a town known best for its francophone culture (and poutine), there are reportedly already two 3D printers being used for medical purposes. In fact, the technology has already been used to 3D print metal implants used to rebuild the jaws of patients who have undergone cancer treatments.

Dr. Gaston Bernier, the Chief of Dental Medicine in the Oncology department of the CHU Québec-Université Laval, commented: “We’re talking about a game changer. In a few years we’ll be able to say that there was medical care before 3D printing but now, we are way beyond.” Bernier believes that there will soon be many more medical applications for 3D printing.

The 3D printing medical center will allow the city of Quebec to become more autonomous, as it currently relies on the United States to bring in many supplies and equipment, says François Blais, the minister of Capitale-Nationale. Having the technology locally will offer many benefits to patients, both in terms of cost and accessibility, he added.

The announcement for the 3 million CAD medical 3D printing center is part of Quebec’s Research and Innovation Strategy, an initiative which seeks to bolster and put Quebec among the 10 leaders of research and innovation for the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development by 2022.

The CRIQ, one of the partners helping to make the 3D printing center a reality, has reportedly been interested in 3D printing technologies for the last five years. Denis Hardy, the CEO of CRIQ, said that he is optimistic about the technology and that the center will not only give the Quebec healthcare network more autonomy but will open up a number of opportunities for scientific advances in the medical field.

 

 

Posted in 3D Printing Application

 

 

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