Lenzie health campaigner Tom Herbert wins long battle for chemo service at Stobhill

Successful campaign: Rona Mackay MSP and Tom Herbert outside Stobhill Hospital.
Successful campaign: Rona Mackay MSP and Tom Herbert outside Stobhill Hospital.

Health campaigner Tom 
Herbert has won his long 
battle for an outpatient 
chemotherapy service at 
Stobhill Hospital.

NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde are to make the service available for certain types of cancer at Stobhill and at community medical centres across East Dunbartonshire.

Tom, from Lenzie, whose wife Margaret sadly passed away from breast cancer in 2012, said: “This is marvellous news. Patients from East Dunbartonshire and North Glasgow will be able to access treatment much closer to home, avoiding a tiring and expensive journey to Glasgow.

“So many people have been asking me if this is going to happen and I have been campaigning with all my heart for this.

“I know it will make a difference to so many people trying to cope with this terrible condition.”

Strathkelvin and Bearsden SNP MSP Rona Mackay, who along with Tom has been 
advocating for local chemotherapy services, welcomed the news.

She said: “While the Beatson will always be the Centre for Excellence in the West of Scotland, I am delighted that people in my constituency who are assessed to have treatment closer to home will be able to do this.

“It will be rolled out over the next few years, so it will not happen overnight, but to know that it will be available in the future is such good news.

“I am also delighted for Tom Herbert who has campaigned so hard on this issue for many years. The Health Board is to be congratulated for this forward-thinking plan.”

The Health Board review, which launched the strategy Moving Forward Together, includes a new cancer treatment programme which will involve treatment being given closer to home for residents at the hospital and in community medical centres.

Ms Mackay backed Tom’s campaign for chemotherapy services at Stobhill when she became an MSP back in 2016.

Chemotherapy is currently provided at the Beatson Centre for patients north of the River Clyde including East Dunbartonshire and the New Victoria hospital for patients in the south.

Chemotherapy did not form part of services at the new Stobhill hospital when it opened in 2009.

Tom argued the population of the north was higher than the south, which has its own dedicated service and patients in some parts of East Dunbartonshire and North Glasgow faced long and costly bus and taxi trips for treatment.