Medical cannabis was legalised in the UK late last year, but patient access remains a problem, with only a handful of cannabis-based medical products prescribed so far. Abi Millar asks why that is and explores the potential for the UK’s medical cannabis market.
In November 2018, the UK made medical cannabis products legal on prescription, joining the growing number of European countries that have done so. The changes, announced by UK Home Secretary Sajid Javid, followed several high profile cases in which seriously ill children were unable to access the medicines they needed.
“Having been moved by heartbreaking cases involving sick children, it was important to me that we took swift action to help those who can benefit from medicinal cannabis,” said Javid.
The new law moved medical cannabis from schedule one under the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001, to schedule two. Schedule one means a drug has ‘no therapeutic value’, whereas schedule two means a drug is controlled but does have a recognised medical use.
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