FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Fort St. John Hospital Foundation launched their inaugural 50/50 community cash lottery to raise funds for a piece of ophthalmology equipment.

The organization is using the funds to purchase a new Stellaris Vision Enhancement System ELITE for the Fort St. John Hospital. The current machine is over a decade old, leading to an increase in surgery wait times, according to the foundation.

“The Fort St. John Hospital’s Ophthalmology services provide Northern residents with access to vision corrective surgeries, primarily cataract surgery,” said the foundation in a release.

The Stellaris ELITE is designed for use in both anterior and posterior segment eye surgeries.

The foundation says the new machine will address wait times, allowing the number of surgeries to increase from 12 to 16 daily.

“Shorter wait times, of course, ensure better outcomes for patients, as well as reducing the need to travel to receive treatment,” said the foundation.

Participants in the 50/50 have a chance to win up to $10,000. Tickets can be purchased through the foundation’s website.