Medicinal cannabis available from next month
DOCTORS will be able to prescribe cannabis products to patients from November 1, Home Secretary Sajid Javid has announced.
Mr Javid had decided to relax 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 Wales, England 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.
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, 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 had previously been classed as a Schedule 1 drug, meaning it is thought to have no therapeutic value.