United Kingdom


More parents are being forced to smuggle medical marijuana into the UK

Medical marijuana is technically legal in the UK, but it's extremely difficult for patients to obtain legally, so the parents of many sick children have resorted to smuggling the drug, writes Calvin Hughes.


Fresh guidance to fill 'information vacuum' on new cannabis products for medicinal use

A clinical review, published today (Saturday 6 April 2019) for the BMJ, provides new interim advice for doctors and clinicians in prescribing cannabis-based products and cannabinoids to treat certain conditions.

Since a policy change in November 2018, specialist doctors registered with the General Medical Council (GMC), have been permitted to prescribe new medicines which derive from cannabis. Yet, research into these products has, to date, been limited creating an 'information vacuum' about these medicines, their benefits or harms.


Brits urgently warned over cannabis oil dangers amid high street craze

It could be dangerous for people to use cannabis oils bought in the High Street to treat medical conditions, according to an expert.

Dr Tom Freeman said it was a "big risk" for people to use CBD oil, which can be bought from shops like Holland & Barrett, for health problems.

Holland & Barrett has been selling CBD oil for over a year in its stores, and since November doctors have been able to prescribe cannabis products to patients after the Government relaxed the rules.

The new regulations followed several high-profile cases, including that of young epilepsy sufferers Alfie Dingley and Billy Caldwell, whose conditions appeared to be helped by cannabis oil.


Cannabis capitalists scrutinize future of UK's fledgling industry

It's a Wednesday evening in the City of London, and a strange crowd is gathering in the offices of DLA Piper, a global corporate law firm. Listen closely and you can hear the creak of expensive shoe leather as delegates reach for the tiny canapes and excellent wine.

There are stockbrokers, hedge-fund managers and pension-fund investors, but also Essex farmers and quick-witted East End boys and girls here — all with an eye on the future of the nascent British medicinal cannabis industry.

There's a definite whiff of change on the air, which is matched by the fragrant tang of recently smoked marijuana on the breath of a number of the more casually dressed delegates. On First Wednesdays though, everyone is welcome.


Epileptic girl, whose family couldn't get medicinal cannabis on the NHS is 'saved' after Canadian firm gives her the drug for free

A three-year-old girl with severe epilepsy is now being given medicinal cannabis for free by a Canadian company because the NHS won't give it to her. Jorja Emerson, from Dundonald in Northern Ireland, has been given cannabis oil by her father since December last year after it was legalised in the UK. But her family has faced a gauntlet trying to get their hands on the medicine, which reportedly cuts her number of daily seizures from 30 to as few as three. Her father Robin, 33, claims the NHS won't prescribe her the medicine she needs so Canadian firm Aphria has staged a 'life-saving' intervention.


Brits to be banned from Amsterdam's cannabis coffee shops post-Brexit

British nationals are set to be banned from Amsterdam’s cannabis cafés when Brexit is complete, according to city officials.

Europeans are permitted to purchase small quantities of cannabis at coffee shops in the Dutch city thanks to the EU’s freedom of movement laws. But now that Britain is leaving the EU that privilege is about to go up in smoke.


Why is the NHS holding back on medical cannabis? Blame data

“I think that we’ve opened a Pandora's box,” Dame Sally Davies, the chief medical officer for England, told a parliamentary committee on medical cannabis earlier this month. Stressing how little is known about the health benefits of marijuana, Davies warned of its potential dangers. And she isn’t alone in her concerns.

Since legislation was introduced by home secretary Sajid Javid in November 2018, only a token few NHS doctors have prescribed cannabis to patients, despite the high demand from advocacy groups.


10 things you'll want to know about Europe's fast-growing marijuana market

You've probably heard plenty about the launch of the Canadian recreational marijuana market. And you are likely up to speed on the rapid expansion of legalization of both medical and recreational marijuana in the U.S. But how much do you know about marijuana markets in Europe?

Cannabis market research company Brightfield Group released its European CBD and Cannabis Market 2019 Report on Tuesday. This report analyzed the cannabidiol (CBD) and cannabis markets in Europe and in key individual European countries. Here are 10 things you'll want to know about Europe's fast-growing marijuana market from Brightfield Group's new report. 


Cannabis UK: When will medicinal cannabis be available? Why has it been delayed?

It was revealed doctors in the UK would be able to prescribe cannabis-derived medicine.

The drug is banned in the UK, but it was announced the rules would be relaxed about cannabis products due to a number of health benefits.

But the excitement was short lived as virtually no patients seeking medicinal cannabis on the NHS have been able to access it.

And now the access to medical cannabis is could be delayed further.

England’s Chief Medicinal Officer Dame Sally Davies called for robust scientific trials to check the safety of the medicine in Parliament on Monday.


Medicinal cannabis for MS in the UK – a long way from reality

Despite the change in law, the government has failed on its promise to deliver access to potentially life-changing medicinal cannabis – The MS Society is demanding better.

For the past 15 years Paul has been in a continuous loop of trial and error, in search of an effective treatment for the constant pain and muscle spasms he lives with. Diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS) in the mid-2000s, Paul’s condition has deteriorated rapidly in the last three years. So far, no treatment or therapy has worked to ease his symptoms.

Paul, who is 48, has repeatedly asked for Sativex, a cannabis-based drug licensed for spasticity in MS. But because it’s not routinely offered on the NHS in England, Paul’s neurologist has not been able to prescribe it.


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