Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs: make medicinal cannabis available on prescription

The Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs has told the government that doctors in the UK should have the option to prescribe cannabis-derived medicinal products to patients with certain medical conditions. It comes after high profile cases involving children with severe epilepsy being denied access to cannabis oil, such as Sophia Gibson and Jace Newton-Sealey. The government must now agree on a definition for these products. The Council recommended that clinical trials be carried out urgently to improve understanding of medicinal cannabis products, as well as their safety and effectiveness.…

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Sell cannabis like alcohol and cigarettes, says British public in new poll

A majority of the British public back the legalisation and decriminalisation of cannabis use so that it would be sold in shops like alcohol and tobacco, according to a BMG Research poll for the Independent. More than 1,500 people were asked if they supported or opposed the proposal that “cannabis be legalised, so that it is sold legally within a government regulated market in the same way that alcohol and tobacco is”. Overall, 22% strongly backed the move, while 29% somewhat supported it, making total support 51%. Strongly opposed were…

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Police ‘decriminalising cannabis’ as prosecutions fall away, says Lamb

A substantial fall in the number of prosecutions and cautions for possessing the drug show that the police are in effect ‘starting to decriminalise’ cannabis, says Lib Dem MP Norman Lamb. Figures from the Ministry of Justice, released in response to a parliamentary question from Lamb, show that last year only 15,120 people in England and Wales were prosecuted for possession of cannabis, a fall of 19% since 2015. Police issued cautions to 6,524 people in 2017 – 34% fewer than two years before. Lamb, who has called for a…

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Only Five Patients Apply For Medicinal Cannabis Licence Due To Extortionate Fee

A new government panel set up to give patients a licence for medicinal cannabis has received almost no applications after the Home Office imposed a fee of £3,655 per patient, according to The Times. The paper said that  fewer than five applications have been received. Patients have condemned the panel as a “farce” and a “gesture” aimed at placating the public and media. Applicants for a licence, who must be clinicians on the General Medical Council’s specialist register, fill in an 11-page form detailing every drug prescribed to the patient…

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Update: Sophia Gibson granted life-changing cannabis licence

Sophia Gibson, the seven-year-old girl from Northern Ireland who has been in intensive care after a life-threatening epileptic seizure, has been granted a long-term licence for the use of medicinal cannabis. Sophia, from Newtownards, Co Down, has a genetic condition called Dravet syndrome, which causes what her family describe as “frequent and dangerous fits”. Her mother, Danielle, said cannabis oil relieved the symptoms of Sophia’s condition and could drastically reduce the number and intensity of seizures. The licence is for the use of Bedrocan whole plant medical cannabis oils, to…

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