Shifting the dial
It is an extraordinary experience to see new concepts and ideas develop from the ground up. It is even more impressive when new ideas and meaningful results are inspired by contributions from a wide community of people and organisations from varied locations and areas of expertise.
Collaborative outcomes such as these are only possible when you have shared goals, diverse ideas and a commitment to work together.
Over the past year, the VCCC alliance has come together and achieved many significant milestones. Eight thousand people have participated in education and training programs, including 2,000 in the Cancer Survivorship for Primary Care Practitioners course. More than 140 experts have contributed content for the Master of Cancer Sciences program. The first cancer teletrial opened and recruited its first patient. Eleven new, cutting edge investigator-initiated clinical trials have been supported. Cancer registry trials are up and running. The Centre for Cancer Immunotherapy was launched, with researchers from six different institutions working together in one space for the first time. So far, 46,000 health records have been connected between primary care and hospitals to drive new cancer health services research.
These and other achievements are changing the way we tackle cancer in Victoria. Working across organisational boundaries and disciplines, the VCCC alliance members are breaking down traditional barriers to tap into collective capabilities and shift the dial on some of the thorniest problems.
Much has been achieved in a relatively short period of time. We have learned more about our shared potential and the ways that we can make the greatest difference as our alliance matures.
I would like to thank the Board of the VCCC, the executive team and the broader distributed leadership group for their vision and determination. Our alliance has benefitted from the hundreds of people across the members who have thrown their support into these efforts and contributed on committees, steering groups and in programs to share knowledge, learn and drive these advances. I would particularly like to acknowledge the active contribution of our consumer representatives who have shown us the power and importance of the patient perspective in developing relevant, high impact initiatives.
Most importantly, we are grateful for the generous financial support provided by the Victorian Government, which has helped make possible the worthwhile work led by the VCCC. As we enter the final year of our current funding agreement, we have embarked upon a period of evaluation, reflection and future planning to inform our next stage of work. We know that the investment to date in collaborative research talent, cancer care education, consumer participation and broader clinical engagement is having an impact. We look forward to building on this formative work to magnify the collective effort of this powerful alliance to deliver meaningful benefits for the community in Victoria and beyond.
Professor Linda Kristjanson AO