Bone and tissue bank receives funding

WA’s only bone and tissue bank has been allocated much-needed funds in the State Budget after it had been close to closing its doors.

PlusLife will receive a $10 million capital grant from the State Government, which will enable the organisation to continue to provide transplant benefits to almost 10,000 patients.

The new funds will allow the bone and tissue bank to move to new facilities in Midland, which will help them to continue to retrieve, process, store and distribute donated human bone and tissue for transplantation.

PlusLife business and finance manager Chris Bombak said he had been concerned the bone and tissue bank was heading for closure.

“We are quite relieved. Without the funding, we would have potentially been forced to close, due to us being required to move out of our office space by December this year,” Mr Bombak said.

“The funding will allow us to design and construct our new facility which will be our long-term home. We’ve leased a premise off the metropolitan re-development authority out in Midland.”

Health Minister John Day said the funds would be used for a  purpose-built processing and laboratory centre within the Midland health precinct.

“Over the past 23 years, grafts of bone and tissue from PlusLife have transformed many lives for the better. The cash value of these grafts has been put at nearly $30 million but for patients, the value is inestimable,” Mr Day said.

“Demand for these services has grown significantly and the State Government is committed to ensuring the long-term success of this important not-for-profit organisation.

“The $10 million will be used to build new cleanrooms, laboratories and freezer storage space in Midland, boosting the development of this area as a medical and education hub.”

PlusLife, which commonly helps patients with spinal deformities, bone tumours, joint problems, sporting and traumatic injuries and dental bone loss, will continue to operate from its Nedlands facilities until December this year.