Vital cancer research would be “shut down” if Scotland becomes independent, Gordon Brown warned today.
The former Prime Minister warned that lifesaving medical research would be put in jeopardy if the Scottish people vote Yes in this month’s referendum because funding would dry up and the “cross fertilization” of research would be put at risk.
It follows warnings from Sir Paul Nurse, the Nobel-prize winning president of the Royal Society, that researchers north of the border would be denied money from funding organisations based in the UK, such as the Medical Research Council, the Wellcome Trust and Cancer Research UK.
Scotland receives £1 billion more from the NHS than a strict per-head division of spending would imply, because of the greater patient needs and its large land mass, Mr Brown said.
“What you lose most of all is the cross-fertilisation, the connections, where people are exchanging ideas. It of course might continue after independence – people who still talk to each other – but the problem is the financing of the common projects would not take place, and therefore projects would be shut down,” Mr Brown said.