Many people will remember that eighteen months ago and after a positively heroic fight, backed by neurologist Professor Mike Barnes, Hannah Deacon won her campaign to legalise the use of medical cannabis to treat a certain number of limited conditions, including her son Alfie’s complex epilepsy. (You can read much more about it in this blog from October 2019.)
But, as I pointed out in that blog, this legalisation is, as far as other prospective users of therapeutic medical cannabis are concerned, completely useless. Thanks to the draconian limitations imposed upon the granting of prescriptions, none are granted. This means that if you, or your child, need medical cannabis to manage any of the ‘allowed’ conditions (certain forms of epilepsy, pain control and MS) the only way you can get it it is either to pay huge sums of money each month to access private prescriptions of medical cannabis or to risk importing it, illegally, from abroad. This means that not only are you committing a criminal office but that the cannabis could be impounded so you would never get to use it anyhow.
To try to bring pressure on Matt Hancock and the government, Hannah started a change.org petition, End Our Pain, and she is now asking supporters of that petition to email their MP to bring yet further pressure to bear. (This is not difficult to do. End Our Pain have provided a template so all you have to do is to click on the link on their change.org page which will take you to a page on which you can find your MP – and then enter your name and address.)
So, yes we know that that Department of Health is pre-occupied, rightly, with COVID 19 and is already spending huge sums of money on combating the virus. But, enabling NHS prescriptions for this small group of intense sufferers would cost only a few pence compared to what is being spend on pandemic measures – and would save a great deal more money spent on other, less effective and more expensive alternative treatments. And it would transform the lives of those people.
Please follow this link and email your MP.
For Professor Mike Barnes book, a Beginner’s Guide to Medical Cannabis, go here.