Cancer patients in Scotland forced to raid their life-savings to pay for urgent ... trends now
Many are having to travel hundreds of miles for life-saving procedures in England as they sit on lengthy waiting lists north of the Border.
Patients have told how they had to fork out up to £30,000 for private surgery or risk dying while they waited for treatment.
It comes after it was revealed last week more than 1,700 cancer sufferers were turning to private hospitals for chemotherapy.
Humza Yousaf was yesterday blamed for fuelling the crisis by failing to provide the NHS with the staff and resources required to recover after Covid.
Margaret McCaul spent £27,000 for private surgery to remove tumour after being diagnosed with ovarian cancer
Scottish Tory health spokesman Dr Sandesh Gulhane singled out ‘Humza Yousaf’s flimsy recovery plan and dire workforce planning by successive SNP health secretaries’.
He added: ‘Cancer is a devastating diagnosis for any patient to receive and it should never have reached the point where brave individuals are having to fund their own treatment.’
Cancer Research UK’s public affairs manager in Scotland, Dr Sorcha Hume, said: ‘It’s unacceptable that people in Scotland are still waiting too long.
‘NHS staff are working incredibly hard, but years of chronic workforce shortages and a lack of specialist equipment means patients are not receiving the care and treatment they urgently need.’
She added it was ‘crucial’ the Scottish Government’s new cancer strategy was ‘fully funded and implemented to address these issues and transform cancer services for the future.’
One patient forced into raiding her life savings is Margaret McCaul, who was diagnosed in August last year with advanced high-grade ovarian cancer.
She spent £27,000 on invasive surgery to remove her ovaries, fallopian tubes, womb, and other affected organs and tissue after being told she would need to wait three months on the NHS.
Last night she branded it ‘disgusting’ that she and others like her were having to resort to such measures just to stay alive.
She said: ‘Cancer doesn’t