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Health and life sciences in Victoria

Victoria boasts a thriving medical technology sector; accounts for nearly half of the nation’s pharmaceutical exports; and is a leading hub for digital health development. Its thriving ecosystem is built on outstanding research capability, world-class infrastructure, and a depth of talent – all brought together through a strong culture of collaboration.

At the centre of the ecosystem are Victoria’s world-class universities, including the University of Melbourne, Australia’s highest ranking university. Victoria consistently wins more than 40% of Australian Government competitive funding for health and medical research. Its universities and researchers are pushing the boundaries in a number of fields including biomedical engineering, immunology, nanotechnology and neurosciences.

Melbourne’s Parkville Precinct is a globally recognised hub of excellence in healthcare, research and education. The group of diverse research and health sciences institutes located in the Parkville Health Sciences Precinct specialise in smart and advanced materials applications, instrument development, advanced ICT applications and nanotechnology. The precinct includes the new A$1 billion Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre, which brings together the world-recognised Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, the University of Melbourne and other key partners.

Victoria’s global pharmaceuticals reputation is underpinned by its highly developed infrastructure. The state has a sophisticated clinical trials ecosystem and the large-scale infrastructure for drug development.

Global companies like Siemens, Bosch, Invetech, Leica Biosystems, and SRX Global have all chosen to locate in Victoria.

Victoria makes it easy to find skilled talent. Victorian universities produce around one-third of Australia’s graduates across a range of key disciplines, including natural and physical sciences, information technology and engineering. Several Victorian universities offer courses in digital health. This outstanding bioengineering and tech talent is complemented by Victoria’s highly skilled manufacturing workforce.

BioMelbourne Network encompasses Victorian biotechnology, medical technology, pharmaceuticals and health innovation companies. As a for-purpose, industry led membership association, its mission is to foster the development of an advanced, innovation driven and sustainable health industry.

Incentives, grants and support

Health and life sciences is a priority industry in Victoria. Locate your business in the state and you may be eligible for support through a range of Victorian Government grants, funds and loans, including:

  • up to A$50 million in low-interest R&D Cash Flow Loans to support Victorian SMEs to develop products, services and technologies vital to the state’s future economy
  • government and institutional coinvestment for high-growth start-ups through the A$25.75m Venture Growth Fund

The government’s investment attraction agency, Invest Victoria, works with international companies seeking to enter the Australian market by identifying opportunities, providing assistance with business cases, and facilitating introductions to partners, suppliers, recruiters and government agencies.

Case studies

Global leader in telehealth platform development XRHealth recently established its Asia Pacific HQ and Fulfilment Centre in Melbourne. Using proprietary extended reality technology, the company’s cutting-edge Telehealth and Remote Monitoring Service allows clinicians to develop unique treatment plans and monitor patient progress.

In partnership with researchers at RMIT University, Atmo Biosciences has pioneered a  swallowable capsule that detects gases in the gut and measures them in real time. The breakthrough diagnostic tool could revolutionize the prevention and diagnosis of gut disorders and diseases.