Regional Cancer Program Receives $750,000 Donation from BMO Financial Group

    NEWMARKET, ON, Jan. 18 /CNW/ - The campaign to build the Regional Cancer
Program at Southlake Regional Health Centre received a boost today with a
$750,000 gift from BMO Financial Group.
    "Our region is fortunate to have the support of a community leader such
as BMO Financial Group who truly walks the talk of corporate responsibility,"
said Neila Poscente, President and CEO of the Southlake Regional Health Centre
Foundation. "It is clear to us that this is an organization that is very much
a part of our community's fabric, and is committed to bringing advanced and
accessible cancer care to the thousands of York Region and South Simcoe
residents who will need it now or in the future."
    The Regional Cancer Program, scheduled to open in mid-2009, will provide
a full range of cancer services including screening, assessment, surgery,
chemotherapy, psychosocial and palliative care, clinical trials, and, for the
first time in this region, radiation treatment. The spectrum of care will be a
welcome change to cancer patients whose care has been fragmented, receiving
some services at their community hospital and having to travel regularly to
Toronto hospitals for other life-saving treatments such as radiation therapy.
    In the tradition of a hospital that strives to deliver the best
healthcare services its community needs and deserves, the Regional Cancer
Program at Southlake will be a model for the most advanced cancer care
available anywhere in Canada. "One of the most exciting aspects of our
Regional Cancer Program is that it is being developed in partnership with
Princess Margaret Hospital, (PMH) one of the top five cancer research
hospitals in the world," said Dan Carriere, President and CEO, Southlake
Regional Health Centre. "New discoveries and innovative cancer therapies that
are changing cancer care for patients around the world, are happening at
Princess Margaret. For Southlake patients, our partnership will mean access to
the newest discoveries the moment they become available."
    In addition to the mentorship of PMH, Southlake cancer patients can have
the confidence that they will benefit from the very latest in medical
technology including Image Guided Radiation Therapy (IGRT), the gold standard
in radiation treatment today, which precisely targets the tumour while
protecting healthy tissue, and from digital mammography which can detect 28
per cent more cancers than traditional film mammography.
    "BMO's gift builds on our long-standing partnership with Southlake,
dating back more than 75 years, and is another way for us to support the
communities where we live and work," said Alexandra Dousmanis-Curtis, Senior
Vice-President, Greater Toronto Area Division, BMO Bank of Montreal. "I am
particularly proud of the support our employees have provided to the hospital,
donating more than $100,000 over the past few years through the BMO Employee
Charitable Foundation."
    While the campaign's $60 million goal is now in sight, with incredible
generosity from individuals and corporations like BMO, Southlake still has a
challenge ahead. "We are confident that all of the communities to be served by
the Regional Cancer Program, throughout York Region and south Simcoe County,
will appreciate the value this life-saving service will bring to all of us,"
said Ms. Poscente. "Given that almost one in two of us will receive a cancer
diagnosis in our lifetimes, we should all want to ensure that we have the best
cancer care right here, close to home."

    BMO serves customers through five locations in Newmarket and the
surrounding community. In 2007, BMO contributed $42.6 million in corporate
donations, sponsorships and events, supporting communities and thousands of
charities and not-for-profit organizations across Canada.

    Southlake Regional Health Centre is a full-service regional hospital
located in Newmarket, and, because of its many specialty programs, serves an
area from southern York Region to Muskoka. The only non-teaching hospital in
Ontario to specialize in both cancer and cardiac care and to offer five
regional programs, Southlake has earned a reputation as a healthcare leader by
performing leading-edge procedures including a recent world-first cardiac

For further information:

For further information: Media Contacts: Rena Scheffer, Director of
Marketing and Communications, (905) 836 7333 ext. 237,; Paul Gammal, Director, Communications, BMO
Financial Group, (416) 867-3996,

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