Malcolm Turnbull needs to prove to Victorians his plan for health and medical research amounts to more than just cutting health funding in tonight’s Federal Budget.
Acting Premier James Merlino today joined Minister for Health Jill Hennessy at St Vincent’s Hospital to call on Malcolm Turnbull to fund his fair share of the $180 million Aikenhead Centre for Medical Discovery.
The Centre will bring together the best doctors, nurses, researchers, scientists and engineers together in a new state-of-the-art facility for research and education at St Vincent’s Hospital.
It will be the first of its kind in Australia, and will focus on chronic conditions such as cardiovascular disease, arthritis, cancer and diabetes, and advance cutting-edge treatments and technologies, including robotic hands, heart tissue engineering and spinal cord repair.
The Centre will create thousands of jobs – more than 1,000 during the development and construction phase – and around 10,000 over the next 15 years.
The Andrews Labor Government has already allocated $60 million towards the project – delivering on a key election promise – and project partners will provide a further $60 million.
Two-thirds of the funding is committed and the project is shovel-ready – all is needed is for the Federal Liberal Government to step up and match the Labor Government’s contribution so this important project can proceed.
Instead of continuing to rip much needed funding from Victorian hospitals, Malcolm Turnbull needs to prove to Victorians he is with us – not against us.
Quotes attributable to Acting Premier James Merlino
“This important project has now stalled because Malcolm Turnbull refuses to commit to his fair share of funding.”
“Victorians want Malcolm Turnbull to stop talking about innovation and actually start investing in it.”
Quotes attributable to Minister for Health Jill Hennessy
"This is a project that is shovel-ready – it will create thousands of jobs and all we need is for Malcolm Turnbull to step up and for once put the health of Victorians first and fund his fair share.”
“The budget is a chance for Malcolm Turnbull to show Victorians that his plan for health and medical research amounts to more than just cutting hospital funding.”
Quotes attributable to Parliamentary Secretary for Medical Research Frank McGuire
“This Centre will not only create thousands of jobs – it will save and change the lives of so many Victorians.”
Reviewed 19 August 2020