The Moncton Hospital's new liver scanner was purchased with a donation from the pharmaceutical company AbbVie. (CBC)

Liver testing in New Brunswick will now be quicker and less painful thanks to the Moncton Hospital's new piece of equipment.

Until now, patients with hepatitis B and C and other diseases had to undergo a liver biopsy, a lengthy and painful operating room procedure.

The new FibroScan machine can do the same test in 15 minutes with instant results.

The $190,000 machine was purchased with a donation by pharmaceutical company AbbVie.              

With a growing health-care budget, partnerships like this are important for the health system and patients, says Health Minister Ted Flemming.

"All of the results of a needle biopsy are there and, instead of eight hours, it's 10 minutes. Instead of post-op complications, the patient walks to his car and goes home," said Flemming.

The Moncton Hospital is the first to offer this technology in New Brunswick.

It's expected that more than 2,000 scans will be performed each year.