The Scottish government has finally granted the first patients in Scotland legal access to medical cannabis. This is great news for those who have been waiting years for this day to come, but it’s also a reminder of how long we still have left before full legalization becomes a reality.
After a long wait, Scotland has finally started to prescribe cannabis. Sapphire medical products are the first company to be licensed by the Scottish Medicines Consortium for medical marijuana.
My Cowan ancestor boarded a ship in Scotland and set sail west a couple hundred years ago. I’ve been to Edinburgh in the winter, so I owe him a debt of gratitude for a variety of reasons.
Another factor was brought to my attention by a BBC story.
“Scotland’s first medicinal cannabis clinic has started prescribing to patients suffering from chronic pain conditions,” according to the BBC. The Sapphire Medical Clinic in Stirling, which was authorized by authorities in March, offers unlicensed cannabis-based medications for individuals with illnesses that don’t fit the requirements for NHS-prescribed cannabis products… In November 2018, medical cannabis became legal in the United Kingdom, and physicians are now authorized to prescribe it in specific circumstances.”
“Cannabis was shifted from schedule 1 to schedule 2 under the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001, which meant it had no medicinal benefit. It now allows physicians to administer the medication in certain circumstances… Many additional cannabis products aren’t legally available, but they may still be prescribed privately.” Unlicensed cannabis-based medical products should be prescribed by specialist clinicians “where there is clear published evidence of benefit” and there is a “clinical need that cannot be met by licensed medicines and where established medicines have been exhausted,” according to a spokesperson for Healthcare Improvement Scotland.
To put it another way, after patients have had enough suffering, they may be permitted to try cannabis.
“Scotland Forever!” I’d shout if it hadn’t taken so long.
Millions of Americans, like me, had ancestors who immigrated from that island and are basically “bio-identical” to the otherwise free Scots who had to suffer for years until politicians and bureaucrats decided they deserved a loophole.
“Independent clinics must ensure that appropriate consultations occur, clinicians make informed assessments, informed patient consent is obtained in accordance with the law and professional guidelines, and patients understand the risks and benefits of a treatment or medication,” according to the statement.
“In addition, physicians should inform patients if there is very little proof of the efficacy of the therapy they have chosen.”
Hey, have you ever heard of the US, Canada, or the Netherlands? It seems that this is not the case.
I visited Edinburgh, Scotland’s lovely city, in February 2002, and met Kevin Williamson, a very intelligent, pleasant guy who is a mainstay in Edinburgh’s literary scene. He was also the Scottish Socialist Party’s drug policy adviser. (Probably the only thing we agree on is cannabis!)
RNC Chair Refuses To Answer Whether GOP Supporters Of Medical Marijuana Are Welcome He had just returned from a trip to Haarlem, where our common friend, the late Nol van Schaik, had three coffee shops.
Later in the year, The Guardian would report: A rebel publisher plans a cannabis café; he brought Trainspotting to print, and now he wants to create an urban hideaway for Britain’s dope users.
Williamson was never able to obtain the green light from the Edinburgh police. So, nearly two decades later, a clinic is only now allowed to provide cannabis to ill patients.
Meanwhile, Scotland is dealing with a serious drug issue.
The table of drug-related fatalities is shocking, and cannabis, of course, isn’t included.
Drug Deaths in Scotland: An Increasing Medical Problem, according to the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh.
“The National Records of Scotland announced on 15 December 2020 that the number of drug-related fatalities registered in Scotland year 2019 was 1,264, up 6% from 2018 when 1,187 drug-related deaths were recorded1. Many analysts were not surprised by the 6% increase, since some had already predicted an increase in drug-related fatalities in 2019. More importantly, the numbers for 2018 – which were published in July 2019 – were 27% higher than the previous year (2017), and the highest since records started in 1996.”
They must, however, exercise extreme caution while dealing with cannabis.
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