In 2018, the legislation regarding medicinal cannabis in the United Kingdom underwent constant changes, due to the need to help patients suffering from severe refractory epilepsy. In addition, Canada became the second country in the world, after Uruguay, to legalize medical cannabis programs.
What has prompted legal changes in medicinal cannabis in the United Kingdom?
The online newspaper The Independent published the case of Billy Caldwell, a 12-year-old boy who suffers from autism and a severe form of epilepsy. His case became famous because he became the first child in the United Kingdom to be prescribed with a component found in the cannabis plant known as Cannabidiol (CBD).
Billy started taking the medication after consulting his case with an expert in childhood epilepsy in California. After the initial treatment, he spent 300 days without seizures. However, Caldwell's doctor in Northern Ireland was ordered to stop the prescription, as this was contradictory to legislation in the United Kingdom.
In a desperate attempt, Ms. Caldwell traveled to Canada to obtain medicinal cannabis for Billy. Unfortunately, it was confiscated at the London Heathrow airport by the border guards. A few days after this incident, the Department of Health of Northern Ireland granted an emergency license to the hospital in which Billy was admitted to a state of emergency. Thus, the child could be treated again with medicinal cannabis.
Another similar case is that of six-year-old Alfie Dingley, who suffers from a rare form of epilepsy. He also gained access to the substance after his mother sent an application to the UK Prime Minister, Theresa May, and Secretary of State, Sajid Javid, in order to receive a license after the success of Billy Caldwell.
Both cases show the strong need for a review of the current categorization in which medical cannabis in the United Kingdom It is being classified.
This created a new legal framework for medicinal cannabis in the United Kingdom
According to an article published by PharmaTimes, members of Parliament called for a revision of the law in response to the growing pressure regarding the regulation of access to cannabis oil. The review was made in two parts:
- The professor and medical head Sally Davies was responsible for reporting on what cannabis-based substances should be taken into account, given the limited medical evidence available.
- The Advisory Council on Drug Abuse (ACMD, for its acronym in English), was commissioned to reclassify cannabis category 1, a category that represents a high potential for abuse and without any therapeutic value, to category 2, with an accepted and restricted medical use.
Which patients can be treated with medicinal cannabis in the UK?
As reported by the Medical Cannabis Access Program, medication must only be authorized in individuals in whom conventional treatments have previously failed. Likewise, there must be minimal evidence that medicinal cannabis could be effective against the pathology as well as having consulted an expert doctor. Under these requirements, the Minister of Health may provide legal licenses to a registered, trained and experienced physician for the patient in question. In addition, it is necessary to follow a program over a period of five years to obtain the greatest advantage of the safety and effectiveness of the treatment.
For now, the only therapeutic indications are:
Are all medicinal cannabis products considered medicines?
The Advisory Council on Drug Abuse has made it clear that, to enter the pharmaceutical market, medicines must demonstrate their safety, quality and efficacy based on clinical trials. Therefore, unauthorized products will remain in category 1.
On the other hand, the need to investigate further has also been recognized and that the legal framework on medicinal cannabis in the United Kingdom has acted, until now, as a barrier to research, limiting the study of the plant and its therapeutic benefits for other diseases. .
In conclusion, a new health program based on medicinal cannabis has been initiated for a limited number of diseases, allowing its preparation and administration in Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
Did you like the post? Give us some feedback! This post has been based on an existing research to the date of publication of the article. Due to the increase in studies based on medical cannabis, the information provided can vary over time and we will keep informing in further writings.
Here’s what you want to know before visiting your local medical dispensary:You will need a doctor’s recommendation, medical cannabis certification, and/or whatever proper documentation is required by your state. Typically, you need to be 18 or older to be eligible for a medical consent, but exceptions may be made in some conditions for minors with particularly debilitating problems. You will often enroll with a medicinal dispensary. This is to maintain your medical cannabis recommendation or certification on file for legal and regulatory purposes. There’ll be a waiting space. This is to control the circulation of product and patients, but a straightforward dividing wall also gives patients privacy and direct one-on-one contact using a budtender to candidly discuss medical issues. Many times, but not always, your purchases will be tracked by medical dispensaries. This procedure can assist budtenders and patients track effective medication in addition to possess a living record of manufacturers and goods for future reference and follow up. Medicinal dispensaries usually allow you to smell and analyze the buds prior to purchase. This might vary from state-to-state.
DOES AN APPLICANT NEED MUNICIPAL APPROVAL BEFORE RECEIVING A RETAIL CANNABIS LICENSE? Yes, municipal approval is required before the AGLC will subject a retail cannabis license. Applicants must get in contact with their intended municipality to learn requirements concerning municipal retail cannabis legislation, zoning requirements, land-use limitations, and location requirements concerning how near a retail store is into a provincial medical care facility, college, or parcel of land designated as a college book.
Keep non-medical cannabis legal Adults who are 19 years or older are able to:Have up to 30 gram of legal dried cannabis or the equivalent on their person. Share up to 30 g of legal cannabis along with other adults in Canada. Purchase cannabis products from a Yukon Liquor Corporation licensed retailer. Grow up to four plants per family. It’s illegal to present non-medical cannabis to anyone below the age of 19 and for anybody under the age of 19 to possess any amount of anti inflammatory cannabis in Yukon.It is illegal and dangerous to drive while under the influence of cannabis or other intoxicants.