Fiona Morrson is a recovering primary breast cancer patient who was diagnosed with an aggressive form of disease last January. She is campaigning for access to the treatment pertuzumab ... this is her story.

The last thing you want to hear when you're a cancer patient is that you've run out of options. Cancer is a devastating and difficult disease, and for many patients that is the tragic situation they find themselves in. But I was in a different position. I was told there was another option for me – but I was not allowed to access it.

Pertuzumab – also known by its brand name Perjeta – is an effective treatment for breast cancer. I am a recovering primary breast cancer patient, and my consultant in Glasgow said that pertuzumab could have been a useful part of my treatment before and after my surgery, but I was also told that it was too expensive for the NHS in Scotland and so I wouldn’t be able to access it.

READ MORE: Cancer patient urges Health Minister to drop drug price

Now, my treatment was successful and even without pertuzumab I hope and pray I’ll make a full recovery. But the question mark will always be there – what might have been had I been able to try pertuzumab? And other women – particularly those with incurable secondary breast cancer – are being denied a treatment that could give them 16 more months of life.

But I don’t blame the NHS for saying no. The reason they’ve said I can’t access the medicine is that the price demanded by the drug company, Roche, is simply too expensive to justify (the publicly listed price of pertuzumab is £43,908 per patient per year). Our hospitals are under-funded and our nurses underpaid. We can’t keep transferring millions into the pockets of rich drug companies without putting up a fight for a fair price.

READ MORE: Holyrood urged to make breast cancer drug available to Scots

And I want our government to put up the best fight to get a fair deal for cancer patients as they can. And that’s why I was disappointed to hear the response of the Health Secretary Shona Robison on Thursday, in response to a question from the Green MSP Alison Johnstone, about Just Treatment’s campaign in which she encouraged the Government to use a vital legal tool to increase the pressure on Roche to charge a fair price.

When asked about the Government's power – in the face of Roche’s refusal to charge the NHS a fair price – to suspend the patent which gives them a monopoly and allow another manufacturer to supply the drug for a fair price, Shona Robison acknowledged that this was something they could do ... but weren’t considering it for pertuzumab.

The Health Secretary claimed that using a so-called Crown use licence would be too costly and take too long. Now whilst it is true it would take some time for the Crown use licence process to deliver an alternative supply of pertuzumab, that is no reason to voluntarily give up the one key weapon the Government has to increase pressure on the drug company in the negotiations.

Public health safeguards such as the Crown use licence exist to prevent drug companies exploit their patent monopolies to demand extremely high prices at the cost of patients' health. It is vital our government is prepared to stand up to the industry and use them or they will continue to try to rip the NHS off. I had no choice when it came to accessing pertuzumab for my treatment, but the Scottish Government do have choices and I hope they side with patients and the NHS over the profits of big drug companies like Roche.