Key Milestones 2020-21

Strategic Research Plan 2017-20 paved the way

The VCCC Alliance Strategic Research Plan 2017-20 (SRP), supported by a $30 million investment from the Victorian Government in 2016, galvanised a groundbreaking collaborative response and delivered some important outcomes that have paved the way for many of the programs in the new Strategic Program Plan 2021-24. The final evaluation report for the SRP was submitted to the Victorian Department of Health in October 2020.

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The SRP comprised 19 programs grouped around four themes: Leadership and Collaboration; Research Development; Clinical Trial Expansion; and Outstanding Cancer Workforce. Among the long list of results of the SRP programs:

  • Patients in rural and regional areas can participate in cancer clinical trials through their local cancer health service
  • Millions of primary health and hospital records have been linked, unlocking a treasure trove of data for clinical research
  • 28,000 people participated in more than 300 cancer education events and programs – a major contribution to our state’s world-class cancer workforce
  • The new, internationally acclaimed online Master of Cancer Sciences through the University of Melbourne was developed thanks to over 200 contributors - and graduated its first cohort
  • Clinicians and researchers have been given the tools to develop investigator-initiated trials – meeting a critical need in this area and opening up significant future research potential
  • A new cohort of nurses have been trained to conduct clinical research, asking key questions to improve patient experiences of their cancer treatment and survival.

Discover more outcomes of the SRP 2017-20

High impact – celebrating five years of the Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre building

2021 marked the five-year anniversary of Australia's first ever, purpose-built comprehensive cancer centre facility. The Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre was built under a Public Private Partnership with the vision to save lives by connecting the world’s best cancer research, education, treatment, and care under one roof.

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Then US Vice-President Joe Biden at the official opening of the VCCC Building in 2016.

Since the official opening by Premier Daniel Andrews in the company of now US President Joe Biden, the vision for the building has become an exciting reality with a multitude of achievements realised under its amazing glass roof.

Funding boost to improve outcomes for all

The 2020-21 Victorian Budget included $33.1 million over three and a half years for the alliance to continue its work to improve cancer outcomes across the state. $27 million of this supports the new Strategic Program Plan 2021-24.

The new funding will support projects that focus on the limited treatment options for low survival cancers (such as lung cancer, at a 22 per cent five-year relative survival rate, and pancreatic cancer, at just 12 per cent 1), and will increase access to personalised medicine through the expansion of genomic testing and precision oncology.

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A new digital oncology learning hub, improved data linkage, translational research and health equity initiatives will be prioritised through the vital funding support. The priorities leverage the strengths of VCCC Alliance members and are aligned with the Victorian Cancer Plan 2020-24.

“We want to improve outcomes for all Victorians with cancer.” - Professor Grant McArthur, Executive Director of the VCCC Alliance.

  1. Fig 30 p41 Victorian Cancer Registry. Cancer in Victoria: Statistics & Trends 2019. Cancer Council Victoria, Melbourne, Victoria 2020