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State Budget focus on cancer research in Victoria

Wednesday 27 April, 2016

Cancer Council Victoria has welcomed the investment in clinical research and health infrastructure outlined in today's State Budget.

The measures that will help increase cancer survival rates through improving the detection and treatment of cancers include:

  • $19.8 over four years to accelerate the translation of medical research into clinical practice as part of its Health and Medical Research Strategy.
  • $16.6 million over four years to cancer control services including the Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre Partnership and the Victorian Cancer Registry.
  • $28.5 million for the roll-out of the Victorian Medicinal Cannabis Access scheme.

Cancer Council Victoria CEO Todd Harper said it was critical that governments invested in clinical research and data collection to continue improvements in the early detection and treatment of cancer.

"With the number of Victorians diagnosed with cancer expected to increase by 39% to 41,000 in 2029, we need to invest in research today to lessen the burden in years to come," Mr Harper said.

"We've seen survival rates improve by nearly 20% since 1988, but they will only continue to improve with a dedicated approach to all facets of cancer control, from research, through to preventing cancer and supporting people affected by it.

"Accelerating the translation of medical research into clinical practice through measures such as streamlining the clinical trial research program will result in more timely cancer treatments for patients."

Mr Harper said he also welcomed the Government's commitment to new treatment options with its funding of medicinal cannabis and hoped some of the allocated budget would be used for further research into the effectiveness of medicinal cannabis as it relates to cancer care - a call also supported by Cancer Council Victoria's Clinical Network.

Cancer Facts:
  • 84 Victorians are diagnosed with cancer every day and 29 Victorians die from the disease.
  • The most common cancers in Victoria are breast, prostate, bowel, lung and melanoma.
  • Between 1988 and 2013 five-year survival increased from 48% to 67%.