Drug company gives $2M to N.C. Cancer Hospital

Posted December 21, 2009 12:23 p.m. EST

— Pharmaceutical manufacturers Sanofi-Aventis on Monday pledged $2 million to the N.C. Cancer Hospital Endowment to support the facility's clinical research and patient programs.

"Sanofi-Aventis has been committed to supporting clinical research in key therapeutic areas with a focus on oncology for more than 50 years," company Chief Executive Chris Viehbacher said in a statement.

"This gift will support critical clinical research and program enhancements that will directly benefit cancer patients – both today and for years to come,” Dr. William L. Roper, dean of the University of North Carolina School of Medicine, vice chancellor for medical affairs and chief executive of UNC Health Care System.

Because the hospital, which opened in September, was paid for entirely with state money, Roper said, private gifts to the hospital’s endowment directly benefit patients and programs.

In recognition of the donation, the hospital's conference center has been renamed for Sanofi-Aventis. The four-room suite of conference rooms is the hub of multidisciplinary care, interdisciplinary communication and outreach from UNC, allowing physicians to consult in real-time with referring physicians across the state.