MSP SHOCK AT CANCER CHARITY CUTS TO BEATSON
CANCER RESEARCH UK AXE FUNDING TO CLINICAL TRIALS UNIT
Local MSP Rona Mackay has expressed disappointment and shock at the decision by Cancer Research UK (CRUK) to axe funding to the Beatson clinical trials unit (CTU) based at the Garscube Campus in East Dunbartonshire.
Ms Mackay, SNP MSP for Strathkelvin and Bearsden, said she was saddened after the charity this week confirmed plans to end core funding for the Beatson CTU campus which is sited at Switchback Road, Bearsden.
After the news broke on Monday, the MSP had an urgent meeting to discuss the impact the decision will have on staff and patients.
It has been revealed that funding from CRUK for trials at the local campus will be wound down over the next two years.
The news means that only seven sites – all in the South of England – will remain fully operational. This includes a new base at Oxford.
Ms Mackay said: “This is terrible news, not just for my constituency but for the whole of Scotland. I am deeply shocked and disappointed, and I hope Cancer Research UK will reconsider its decision.
“Scotland raised £24 million last year for CRUK and Scottish people have a higher rate of sign up to clinical trials than the rest of the UK. They now face missing out on vital access to clinical trials.
“The Beatson focuses on real solutions and outcomes involving real people. CRUK London focuses on basic science, which is of course important, but does not offer the same option for patients here in Scotland.”
Ms Mackay said she will be joining fellow elected representatives across the West of Scotland in penning a joint letter to CRUK urging them to reconsider the decision.