Remainers criticised for 'scaremongering' over claims that Brexit could affect cancer treatment

Remainers criticised for 'scaremongering' after saying Brexit could affect cancer treatment

Some fear Brexit could affect cancer patients (Stock image)

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Remainers have been accused of “scaremongering” over fears that Brexit could affect cancer patients.

Deputy Prime Minister Damian Green has claimed it is wrong of radiologists to say leaving the European Union nuclear agency, Euratom, could affect the importation of isotopes used for cancer scans.

Earlier this week the Royal College of Radiologists had said more than 10,000 cancer patients in the UK are treated with the materials, according to The Sun.

Several MPs used this information to demand answers about cancer treatment, including Labour’s shadow health secretary Jon Ashworth.

But during Prime Minister's Questions yesterday (July 12), Green said: “There has been some unnecessary worry caused to cancer patients by speculating on this.

“Let me set out the position. The import or export of medical radio isotopes is not subject to any particular Euratom licensing requirements.

“Euratom places no restrictions on the export of medical isotopes to countries outside the EU, so after leaving Euratom our ability to access medical isotopes produced in Europe will not be affected."

The Government has already said that the EU has claimed the UK must leave Euratom as it leaves the European Union.

But backbenchers from the Conservatives have joined up with Labour and the Lib Dems to call on Theresa May to reconsider leaving the agency.

Tom Greatrex, the head of the Nuclear Industry Association, has also said: "It is imperative that the Government ensures there is no impediment to the supply of isotopes as a consequence of leaving Euratom.”