Child obesity high
LEVELS of severe obesity among Year 6 children have hit a record high, new figures reveal.
The latest data from the National Child Measurement Programme, overseen by Public Health England, shows 4.2% of 10- and 11-year-olds in England were defined as severely obese last year.
More than a quarter (26.8%) of 10- and 11-year-olds were obese in the most deprived areas in England, compared to 11.7% in the least deprived areas. DOCTORS will be able to prescribe cannabis products to patients from November 1, Home Secretary Sajid Javid has announced.
Mr Javid had decided to reschedule the products, relaxing the rules about the circumstances in which they can be given to patients, after considering expert advice from a specially commissioned review.
The new regulations apply to England, Wales and Scotland, and follow several high-profile cases, including that of young epilepsy sufferers Alfie Dingley and Billy Caldwell, whose conditions appeared to be helped by cannabis oil.
Alfie’s mother, Hannah Deacon, welcomed the move.
She said: “Today is a momentous day for every patient and family with a suffering child who wish to access medicinal cannabis. We urge the medical world to get behind these reforms so they can help the tens of thousands of people who are in urgent need of help.
“I have personally seen how my son’s life has changed due to the medical cannabis he is now prescribed.
“As a family we were facing his death. Now we are facing his life, full of joy and hope which is something I wish for each and every person in this country who could benefit from this medicine.”
Professor Mike Barnes, the medical cannabis expert who secured the first longterm licence for its use for Alfie, said: “This announcement has transformed the position of the UK in this exciting and developing field.
“Many of my medical colleagues are understandably unsure about the benefits.
“After all, medical cannabis has been illegal in the UK for generations. But I urge them to embrace these developments.”
An initial review by chief medical adviser Dame Sally Davies concluded that there is evidence medicinal cannabis has therapeutic benefits.
The Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs, which carried out the second part of the review, then said doctors should be able to prescribe medicinal cannabis provided products meet safety standards.
It recommended cannabis-derived medicinal products should be placed in Schedule 2 of the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001. Cannabis has previously been classed as a Schedule 1 drug, meaning it is thought to have no therapeutic value but can be used for the purposes of research with a Home Office licence.
Mr Javid said that to constitute a cannabis-based product for medicinal use, three requirements must be satisfied.
These are that it “needs to be a preparation or product which contains cannabis, cannabis resin, cannabinol or a cannabinol derivative; it is produced for medicinal use in humans and; is a medicinal product, or a substance or preparation for use as an ingredient of, or in the production of an ingredient of, a medicinal product”.