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$25 million boost to support those living with hard-to-treat cancers

People living with hard-to-treat cancers will soon have better access to new treatment pathways, thanks to a $25 million investment from the NSW Government.

NSW Health Minister Ryan Park said PrOSPeCT, or Precision Oncology Screening Platform enabled Clinical Trial, is a joint initiative by the Commonwealth, the NSW Government and industry partners that will strengthen clinical trial capacity and expertise in NSW.

Mr Park said the $25 million funding boost will see more NSW patients connected to the PrOSPeCT program, supporting those living with ovarian and pancreatic cancers, sarcomas, and advanced and metastasic cancers to access new and emerging treatments.

“PrOSPeCT will screen 23,000 people Australia-wide, with 9,000 in NSW,” Mr Park said.

“The program will undertake comprehensive genomic sequencing of people with cancer and unmet clinical need, mapping their individual DNA profile to help link them to appropriate clinical trials happening in Australia.

“While one-in-two people in NSW will be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime, every cancer is unique, and precision genomics gives clinicians the ability to match treatments more effectively to the needs of individual patients – this research project promises real progress in how we treat cancers.

“One of my ministerial priorities is to embrace innovative and world-leading treatments and methods.

“I am excited by the opportunities that this initiative presents in tackling difficult-to-treat cancers.”

Minister Ryan Park, Minister Emma McBride, Omico CEO Prof David Thomas and Matthew Webster and Heidi Wehbe who were both recipients of genomic profiling and matched precision treatments.

Minister for Medical Research David Harris said the NSW Government is committed to investing in medical research that improves health outcomes for the people of NSW.

“We are continuing to build a dynamic health and medical research ecosystem through investments in programs like PrOSPeCT that accelerate innovation for treatments and infrastructure that seek to improve health outcomes,” Mr Harris said.

NSW Health Deputy Secretary Clinical Innovation and Research, Dr Jean-Frederic Levesque, said PrOSPeCT will change clinical trial practice by selecting patients based on the genetic profile of their disease rather than its location in their body – offering new hope to patients.

“This program will open new and personalised treatment paths for Australians with difficult-to-treat cancers and allow NSW to tap into the global cancer research market,” Dr Levesque said.

PrOSPeCT is a $150 million joint initiative by the Commonwealth, the NSW Government and industry partners aimed at improving cancer research and care Australia-wide.

The project will be led by not-for-profit organisation Omico, which has an established nationwide network of research and treatment centres that facilitate, support and promote genomic cancer medicine.

The organisation focuses on the use of molecular screening for the prevention and treatment of cancer.

Updated 10 months ago