The 3D printer here at the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute is about a very simple thing, it’s about saving lives and protecting lives. It’s about beautiful young children, such as Aubrey, having the possibility of a better life, a longer life and a fuller life.
Our magnificent researchers are now being supported by the best technology in the world. The best researchers in the world, the best technology in the world and that’s the best treatment in the world.
In essence, the future of medicine is reliant on technology, treatment and researchers and that future is here now.
What do you think of the technology? I mean, it’s quite simply mind-boggling, isn’t it?
It’s unbelievable and this is the future imagined being real now.
What it means is that we can diagnose conditions that were undiscoverable and untreatable and we can treat them, and in particular the other thing we can do is over time, we will be able to grow new replacement organs for beautiful children such as Aubrey.
You travel around the country seeing incredible inventions like this and breakthroughs, but is this up there with one of the most amazing things you’ve ever seen?
Well this is one of the most extraordinary new treatments that is available, not just here in Australia, but anywhere in the world. Imagine the capacity to grow a new heart or a new kidney from your own body tissue.
Given that this is the first one outside of the US, what does that say about medical research and the progressions in technology here in Australia and in Melbourne?
What it says is that Australia and the Murdoch Institute are the best in the world. The Murdoch Institute is doing things that are not happening anywhere else in the world and now they have the technology and the firepower to back up the brilliant Australian researchers.
People come from all around the world to be here at the Institute, from the UK, from Malaysia, from Portugal, just as an example in one room.
So we’re incredible lucky to have an institute such as this. As a government, we’ve supported it with over $260 million in recent years, but it’s not the money, it’s the fact that we have this immense centre here in Melbourne of global research capacity.
Minister, on one other topic, there’s new guidelines out from Red Nose which overrule how a parent want their child, their sleeping position and swaddling at child care centres. Do you think that’s right, do you think parents should have a right to determine how their own child sleeps?
Well ultimately parents have the right to determine whichever children’s care institution they place their child with. In terms of the guidelines, those guidelines are about saving and protecting beautiful young babies and toddlers. I certainly will not overrule the advice of some of the medical experts that are leading here in Australia.