The Senate today called on the Morrison Government to hurry up and table its well‑overdue response to the unanimous report of the Senate Select Committee into Funding for Research into Cancers with Low Survival Rates.
“The Government must demonstrate that it is serious about improving outcomes for patients of cancers with low survival rates, and table its response now,” Senator Catryna Bilyk, who served as Chair of the Committee, said.
“While waiting for the Government’s response, thousands of patients of cancers with low survival rates have died.
“Many others are looking for some hope that serious action will be taken to improve their chances of survival.
“If the Government has taken actions in response to the Committee’s report, then the onus is on them to demonstrate what they’ve done and how it relates to the recommendations through a formal response.”
Government responses are required within three months of reports being tabled, making the Government’s response to the low-survival-rate cancer inquiry almost eight months overdue.
“This inquiry received over 300 submissions and over 100 witnesses addressed public hearings,” Senator Bilyk said.
“There were contributions from medical practitioners, researchers and patient advocates, as well patients themselves and their families, who bravely told their tragic stories—often through tears.
“Committee members from the Government, Opposition and cross-bench worked hard to produce 25 recommendations covering issues such as research funding, TGA and PBAC approval processes and access to clinical trials.
“The Government’s failure to provide a timely response is a slap in the face to everyone who contributed to the Committee’s inquiry.”