Lockerbie bomber cancer drug to be offered by NHS

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A CANCER treatment which became known as “the al-
Megrahi drug” after it was credited with prolonging the Lockerbie bomber’s life will finally be given out on the NHS, it has been announced.

Scotland had previously been the only region of the United Kingdom where abiraterone was not made available to late-stage prostate cancer sufferers.

Yesterday, however, the drug, which can typically extend a patient’s life by around four months, was approved for use by the Scotland Medicines Consortium.

David Sinton, 62, who lives in the New Town and was successfully treated for prostate cancer after he was diagnosed in 2000, said: “This is a very good, if slightly belated decision.

“Four months may not sound like a long time but they’re good months in the sense that the patient retains their quality of life.”

Jackson Carlaw, MSP and Scottish Conservative health spokesman, said: “It’s a 
welcome decision, but not before time.

“This drug – which was used to keep the Lockerbie bomber alive so successfully – should have been available long before now.”

Prostate Cancer UK’s chief executive Owen Sharp added: “Now that the correct decision has been made, health boards must waste no time in ensuring that men who need abiraterone can access it as soon as 
possible.”