Announced: Australian Medical Cannabis Industry Development Strategy

Australia’s first ever Medical Cannabis Industry Development Strategy has today been unveiled, with its aim being to move the emerging Victorian medicinal cannabis industry into an established sector.

The strategy sets the goal of Victoria supplying half of Australia’s medicinal cannabis by 2028 and creating up to 500 jobs.

While visiting Monash Medical Centre today, Minister for Health Jill Hennessy and Minister for Agriculture Jaala Pulford also announced an expansion to Victoria’s early access scheme. The imported medicinal cannabis product which has already been offered to 29 children with severe intractable epilepsy will now be expanded to 60 children.

The Victorian Government also plans to offer Victoria’s locally produced product – when it is ready – to an additional 30 children.

Victoria’s scheme has already helped children see a reduction in seizures and has significantly improved their quality of life. Victoria was the first state in Australia to legalise access to medicinal cannabis for those in exceptional circumstances in 2016.

The signing of a landmark MOU between Agriculture Victoria and Canadian company Canopy Growth Corporation will focus on best approaches to strain development, cultivation, manufacturing and education.

Further details in the Victorian Government Press Release and the Industry Development Plan: Developing a Medicinal Cannabis Industry in Victoria 2018-21.

Victorian Government Vouchers are Back!

BioMedVic welcomes today’s news that the Victorian Government is investing in the future of Victorian businesses with $14.5 million in new funding to help businesses grow.

Under the Boost Your Business program, Victorian businesses will be able to apply for vouchers to access targeted services from January 2018. The vouchers will provide funding for businesses to engage registered service providers to undertake activities such as developing new products, improving business processes and systems, identifying new export markets, undertaking research and development or gaining certification.

The vouchers will be available under four different streams:

The first round opens on 29 January 2018 and more information is available here.

Applications Open – Premier’s Awards for Health and Medical Research

The Victorian Government has opened applications for the 24th Premier’s Awards for Health and Medical Research.

Awarded annually to recognise the exceptional contributions made by early career health and medical researchers in their PhD studies, the Premier’s Awards will be expanded to include five category awards in 2018:

  • Basic Science Researcher
  • Clinical Researcher
  • Aboriginal Researcher undertaking research in any field of health and medical research
  • Health Services Researcher
  • Public Health Researcher

The category award recipients receive $5,000 each and the Premier’s Award for Health and Medical Research Excellence recipient receives $15,000 ($20,000 in total). The awards will be announced at an awards ceremony proposed for the end of March 2018.

Applications close Monday 22 January 2018. Apply here

Victorian Cancer Agency 2018 Early Career Health Services Research Fellowships – EOI now open

The Victorian Cancer Agency has opened expressions of interest for the Victorian Cancer Agency Early Career Health Services Research Fellowships.

The intention of this scheme is to fund early career researchers within cancer health services with a focus on building capacity within cancer health services research, improving the delivery of care for patients, improving patient outcomes and improving patient experience. It is expected that applications will align to the Victorian cancer plan 2016-2020 and/or the Cancer Reform Framework.

The scheme is open to medical, nursing and allied health practitioners, health economists, behavioural scientists, statisticians, bioinformaticians, epidemiologists and other disciplines conducting health services research in cancer.

Applications close 31 January.

More information, including guidelines, funding rules and a link to the application forms can be found on the Victorian Cancer Agency website: http://www.victoriancanceragency.org.au/index.php/2018funding-round

BioMedVic Advocacy Hits the Ground Running in 2017

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As for many Australian organisations, December-January was a quieter period for BioMedVic. But our advocacy on behalf of Members continues.

Victorian Parliament resumed last week and most of our Members are ‘back in town’. Amanda Caples and I are in the diary to catch up about what’s happening in DEDJTR and at BioMedVic, to hear what her plans are as Lead Scientist for the state and in which areas BioMedVic may be of assistance. Among the topics I will raise when I meet with Linda Christine, Director Innovation, Industry and International Health in DHHS, is the future of the Operational Infrastructure Support Program that provides funding for indirect research costs to eligible independent medical research institutes in Victoria. Continue reading

New Fellowships a Boon for Victorian Researchers – and Patients

The year has kicked off with the launch of an exciting program aimed at developing the next generation of Victorian researchers, translating research to the clinic and boosting the state’s economy.

As the state’s leading network of health and medical research organisations, BioMedVic is delighted to be working with the Victorian Government to roll out the inaugural round of the Victorian Health and Medical Research Fellowships.
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Victoria’s HMR sector set to grow

We’re excited to announce that Dr George Morstyn, Chairman of Biomedical Research Victoria, has been selected for a new panel established by the Victorian Government to advise on how to attract more investment and jobs to Victoria.

With the aim to drive leadership and excellence in Victorian health and medical research, the Science, Medical Research and Technology Panel will provide advice on attracting funding for medical research, protecting intellectual property, and the translation and commercialisation of research. Continue reading

All Eyes on Victoria at AusBiotech 2016

We’ve been busy in the lead up to the AusBiotech 2016 International BioFest conference this month, ensuring our researchers from academia and industry receive the attention they deserve. BioMedVic assisted the Victorian Government with the state’s presence at the event which attracted an estimated 2,000 delegates.

BioMedVic organised and managed the roster of the Victorian industry and research participants at the Government’s BioIndustry Exhibition booth.

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BioMedVic Members in the Spotlight at AusBiotech 2016

Members will be pleased to hear that – once again – Biomedical Research Victoria is assisting the Victorian Government with the state’s presence at the upcoming AusBiotech 2016 International BioFest conference.

The event is expected to attract over 2,000 delegates from around the world to Melbourne in October – and we have been busy ensuring Victorian researchers from academia and industry receive the attention they deserve.  Continue reading