OPINION – New unit key to beating cancer

THE staff at the Beatson have been doing a tremendous job under considerable pressure for many years now, diagnosing and treating patients with cancer.

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The key to survival for many forms of the disease is early detection and rightly the government has identified that as a priority in the coming years.

For this to be effective there needs to be increased capacity at the cancer treatment centres otherwise the system will collapse under the increased pressure.

It also makes sense to have a centre outside Glasgow as many of the Beatson's patients come form outside the city and this will help the current centre at Gartnavel too as it will ease the huge burden on the unit.

Early diagnosis, allowing early treatment, improves the chances of surviving cancer greatly and is one considerable factor in the city's improving record.

The only way to keep this good work going is – along with individual health and lifestyle changes – to invest in even more research, more staff and more of the equipment necessary to treat more people.

It will be many years before Glasgow can have lower rates of cancers comparable with other cities but a new scanner at a new centre will be a good step in that direction.


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