British Politician Calls for Legalisation of Cannabis

British Politician Calls for Legalisation of Cannabis

British Politician Calls for Legalisation of Cannabis

British politicians call for public to “break the law” and smoke cannabis

  • British MPs, Jeff Smith and Paul Flynn, called on British Parliament to legalise cannabis
  • Cannabis is still Schedule 1 drug in the U.K., meaning the British Government views it as having no medicinal value

Two British politician pleaded with the House of Commons to legalise cannabis this week, calling on the public to “break the law,” and use it regardless of the law.

“I don’t expect any quick progress on drugs policy, but I think we need to start reframing the debate.” – Jeff Smith MP

In a rousing speech in the Houses of Parliament, Jeff Smith, Labour MP for Withington, told the House of Commons that cannabis legalisation “inevitable.”

Smith also criticised the Conservative-led Government as “surely wrong” for criminalising cannabis users for a drug which is “less dangerous than alcohol or tobacco, that the overwhelming majority find pleasant, relatively harm-free and a rewarding experience.”

In an unprecedented move for a British politician, Paul Flynn, Labour MP for Newport West, went even  called for members of the public to break the law:

“We know most of the countries in the world allow this most ancient of medicines. It’s been used for 5,000 years in every continent in the world, it’s used for medicinal purposes.

“Well I would call on people, I know we’re not supposed to do this as members, to break the law, to come here and use cannabis here, and see what happens!”

Slamming the British Government’s “cruelty,” Flynn continued his plea with the public to rebel: “I think we have to say to those who put up with the barbaric stupidity and cruelty of Government policy that denies seriously ill people their medicine of choice.

“We’ve got to call on those who are in this position to act in a way of civil disobedience.”

The heroic politician implored the public to use the late Elizabeth Brice, known to many as Clare Hodges from her medicinal cannabis activism, as inspiration for the protest.

The veteran MP has a history of protesting the U.K.’s antiquated cannabis laws, and actually aided Brice in her protest in the Houses of Parliament before her death in 2011. Smith reminded Parliament that Elizabeth Brice had once consumed cannabis tea, after he had supplied the cup of hot water, within the grounds of Parliament, a crime they both could have faced seven years in prison for.

Mr Smith added, “I don’t expect any quick progress on drugs policy, but I think we need to start reframing the debate.

“There are a limited number of us who are prepared to stand up and speak about this issue at the moment, I hope gradually the numbers will increase because we really need serious debate on this issue, not more of the same approach which has failed.”

The U.K. needs more brave politicians, like Paul Flynn and Jeff Smith, to stand up for what is right; the U.K. needs more politicians guided by compassion rather than greed or fear.

The U.K. also needs more heroes like Elizabeth Brice. Without her tireless efforts the case for medicinal cannabis may be even further behind that it already is.

Thousands of campaigners, patients and politicians are to hold a protest outside the British Parliament on September 13. MMJ will be at the front of the fight, will you?

“Billy’s Bud”: New CBD Rich Cannabis Oil to be Available on the NHS

“Billy’s Bud”: New CBD oil named after Billy Caldwell, the first patient to be prescribed cannabis oil on NHS

  • have released a CBD oil named after Billy Caldwell
  • The 11-year Irish boy’s parents have claimed cannabis saved the boy’s life
  • The CBD oil will be legal to buy in the UK

US Pharmaceutical company, 710 Pharmaceuticals MNE, have released ‘Billy’s Bud”: a CBD oil named after Billy Caldwell, the hero Irish boy who’s battle with severe epilepsy using cannabis has captured the world’s imagination.

“Whatever the rights and wrongs, we had a child who had benefitted and the child’s welfare was paramount.” – Dr O’Hare

Charlotte Caldwell, Billy’s mother, has claimed her son is only alive due to his access to medicinal cannabis. Billy was suffering up to 100 seizures a day due to his status epilepsy, a severe form of epilepsy which means he is unable to come out of seizures by himself.

Speaking to The Independent, Charlotte said her family was “crying happy tears” over his “incredible” progress.

“I just feel absolutely over the moon that at last, we can announce some good news, it’s been a real struggle for us.

“This is massive. This little bottle of oil has actually done this for my little boy, so the company said they wanted to name the oil after Billy – we’re just absolutely honoured and privileged, these people saved Billy’s life. It’s incredible.”

While Billy’s Bud is a CBD only product it will be sold legally in the UK.

Billy himself currently takes two types of cannabis oil; one containing CBD, the other made from the THC, which is illegal in the UK due to its psychoactive effects.

Sativex, made by GW Pharmaceuticals, is currently the only legal full spectrum cannabis-based medicine in the UK.

Billy made history earlier this year when he became the first patient to be prescribed cannabis oil on the NHS. This victory came after a lengthy battle for Charlotte and her son.

The family were forced to America in June 2016, to visit a specialist epilepsy centre in Los Angeles, where doctors found a lesion on the left temporal lobe of Billy’s brain. Due to its positioning, doctors were unable to operate without causing catastrophic damage to his speech and memory. Instead, the Co Tyrone hero was referred to a medical cannabis specialist.

Charlotte was forced to take regular trips to the States where doctors would give the boy cannabis oil to help stop his seizures, which could reach up to 100 a day.

When Charlotte’s supply of the oil nearly ran out and was unable to afford any more trips to the US, she took hi, to the local GP.

Dr Brendan O’Hare looked at the success cannabis oil was having on Billy, and prescribed the CBD oil, making history.

While Dr O’Hare said that he did not want to set a precedent with his prescription, he realised that he had to do what was right: “Whatever the rights and wrongs, we had a child who had benefitted and the child’s welfare was paramount. On that basis, I issued a prescription.

“This was not to open the floodgates for others, it is a one-off.”

The cannabis oil seems to have worked true wonders on Billy, not just his epilepsy, but also on his autism, which Ms Caldwell said has also improved under the use of the oil.

Speaking to The Independent she said, “His eye contact has got really good, he used to have to wear special needs boots to support his ankles, but now he is wearing trainers.

“For some parents, this wouldn’t be a big deal but for us it was massive. His balance and his walking are so much better, he can now go up and down steps whereas before he couldn’t do that, his concentration has got much better, before he couldn’t concentrate for long.”

Story’s such as Billy’s illustrate the increasing need to research the medicinal potential of cannabis. Due to cannabis’ Class B and Schedule I status, research is cripplingly limited. 600,000 people are affected by epilepsy in the UK. 600,000 people could potentially benefit from legalising cannabis for medicinal purposes. Is it time to take this step in the UK?

References and further Reading

Greece Legalises Marijuana for Medical Purposes

Greece Legalises Marijuana for Medical Purposes

Greece becomes sixth EU country to legalise cannabis for medical purposes

  • Doctors will soon be able to prescribe cannabis for several medical uses
  • It’s yet to be seen if Greece will allow legalisation to extend to recreational use
  • Proposal is expected to boost Greece’s faltering economy

Cannabis has just been recognised as having medicinal properties by yet another European country. Greece is the latest EU country to take measures to allow its citizens the basic human right of choice in their medication.

“legalising cannabis will create $23 billion per year. That’s more than the sales of beer, wine and spirits combined!”

Announced last week by Greek Prime Minister, Alexis Tsipras, doctors in Greece will soon be able to prescribe medicinal marijuana to patients with a variety of medicinal conditions, including; MS, chronic pain, PTSD, epilepsy and even for cancer treatments.

Speaking at a press conference, Tsipras said: “From now on, the country is turning its page, as Greece is now included in countries where the delivery of medical cannabis to patients in need is legal.”

Following the Netherlands, Spain, Portugal, the Czech Republic and Finland, Greece has become the 6th country in the EU to take steps towards allowing desperate patients a choice in which medication they take.

Details on how legalisation will proceed, such as how cannabis will be cultivated and distributed, are still to be clarified by the Greek Government.

Cannabis is currently a Table A drug in Greece, the equivalent of class A in the UK. The new proposal will downgrade cannabis to Table B, a classification which other ‘medicinal’ drugs are included in, such as methadone and opium.

Legalisation is expected to provide Greece’s economy a real boost; allowing the creation of a legal drug-industry as well as allowing the country the opportunity to import cannabis-based medications, such as Sativex and Epidoloex.

Legal medicinal cannabis is already proving to be a genuine stimulus to Canada’s economy, with Deloitte estimating that legalising cannabis will create $23 billion per year. That’s more than the sales of beer, wine and spirits combined!

It is yet to be seen whether Greece will go further to allow full-scale cannabis legislation, for recreational use as well as medical, joining Portugal, the only other European country to do so.

Do you think the UK is closer to legalising medicinal cannabis after this news? Countries all across the world are legalising, either for medicinal or fully, it is becoming more and more untenable for the British Government to use their argument that cannabis has no medicinal purposes when so many other Government are proving them wrong.


Can Cannabis Offer a New Hope to Arthritis Sufferers?

Can Cannabis Offer a New Hope to Arthritis Sufferers?

Belfast University launches study into the pain-relieving benefits of cannabis-based medication on Arthritis

  • Belfast’s Ulster University is investigating the possible benefits cannabinoids can offer to sufferers of rheumatoid arthritis
  • The research project will receive £250,000 funding

Irish researchers have launched an extensive new study last year to look into the pain-relieving effects of medical marijuana on various forms of arthritis.

Researchers at the Ulster University (UU) in Belfast are investigating the anti-inflammatory and medicinal properties of cannabis extracts (known as cannabinoids) and the possible benefits they may offer to rheumatoid arthritis or arthritis patients when used in medicines.

UU will work with pharmaceutical start-up GreenLight Medicines on the £250,000 project examine the effects of cannabinoids on the symptoms of people suffering from various forms of arthritis.

Founded in 2015 by Dr. James Linden in 2015, the research and development company (GreenLight) primarily focuses on uncovering the full potential of cannabis-based extracts, as a medicine to treat a multitude of diseases including epilepsy, arthritis, MS, and even cancer.

“I saw results very quickly. Within a matter of a couple of days I was able to stop the prednisone and ibuprofen.” – Katie Marsh

Explaining GreenLight’s studies with UU, Dr. Linden said: “We are studying several components of the cannabis plant which have been shown to possess anti-inflammatory properties.

“Specifically, we’re investigating the use of cannabis-based extracts that have been proven to reduce inflammation, and we wish to explore the full therapeutic potential of these molecules in relation to several inflammatory diseases.

“Ulster University is renowned for its reputation in biomedical sciences research and it has been incredibly supportive during our early development stage, with the researchers having an endless thirst to lead the way in many areas of research across a spectrum of diseases.”

Anecdotal evidence of medical marijuana successfully treating symptoms of arthritis has been reported from across the world. This clinical trial is now hoping to put some concrete evidence behind these claims and make some progress in our knowledge on how to best treat this debilitating disease.

Case studies such as that of American Katie Marsh have served as powerful testimonials to cannabis’ potential to offer relief to those suffering from various forms of the disease.

Speaking to Fox News, Katie explained that when her cannabis-infused juice was far more effective than her pharmaceutical medications:

“I white-knuckled it through the pain and only took painkillers when I absolutely needed them.

“It got so bad that I had trouble getting out of bed, getting off and on the toilet and even dressing.”

The difference that the medical herb made was amazing: “I saw results very quickly. Within a matter of a couple of days, I was able to stop the prednisone and ibuprofen.”

Arthritis is an uncomfortable and often unavoidable disease that often results in severe symptoms including:

  • Persistent joint pain
  • Locked joints
  • Morning stiffness
  • Injuries that don’t heal properly
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome and peripheral neuropathies (tingling or numbness in extremities)
  • & Plantar fasciitis (inflammation of the forefoot)

10 million people suffer from arthritis in the U.K. 10 million people could benefit from further research and easier access to cannabinoids. 10 million people are being unjustly prevented from having a choice in their medication.

Do you think that those suffering from arthritis should have the right to choose access to cannabinoids?

Do you use medical marijuana to treat symptoms of arthritis? Let us know in the comments!

Poland Votes to Legalise Medical Cannabis so Doctors can Prescribe

Poland Votes to Legalise Medical Cannabis so Doctors can Prescribe

Poland has granted desperate patients a lifeline by voting to legalise cannabis for medicinal purposes last week.

  • Lawmakers in Polan have voted to legalise medical cannabis
  • Heavy regulations remain on the type of cannabinoids available
  • Cultivation of medical cannabis in the country is still prohibited


In an overwhelming majority, 443 MPs voted in favour of the move, with only 2 voting against and one abstention. Poland now becomes the largest country in the world allowing its citizens their basic human right of choice of medicine.

There are strict restrictions on the legislation, which will only allow the prescription-only cannabis-based medicines to be made available at pharmacies, with ingredients sourced from abroad.

“Research has consistently shown that cannabinoids are indeed effective at treating epilepsy, especially among young children.”

Cultivation of the medicinal crop was rejected by lawmakers. Instead, cannabis will be imported from abroad. Recreational cannabis remains strictly prohibited under the bill.

Medical cannabis has proven to be an extremely popular policy in Poland. A recent opinion survey, conducted in January, found that 78% of Poles supported the idea that cannabis should be legalised for medicinal purposes.

The bill was tabled last year by Piotr Marzec-Liroy (pictured), a former rapper turned left-wing politician who at the time belonged to the Kukiz’15 anti-establishment movement, now serving as an independent.

Public debate surrounding medicinal marijuana intensified in Poland in 2015 following the controversial firing of a doctor at a Warsaw children’s hospital who had administered cannabinoids to his young epileptic patients on an experimental basis without notifying his superiors.

Research has consistently shown that cannabinoids are indeed effective at treating epilepsy, especially among young children.

The debate was revived in 2016 by the left-leaning lawmaker Tomasz Kalita, who unfortunately died from brain cancer in January this year.

The health minister yielded last year to public pressure, approving refunds of certain specialised treatments involving cannabis-based medicine imported solely at the request of the patient and following special authorisation from the ministry.

Other EU countries to recently approve legislation for medical cannabis include the Republic of Ireland and Germany. Should the UK be the next to follow?

Could Cannabis Offer New Hope to Autistic Children?

Could Cannabis Offer New Hope to Autistic Children?

Why keeping medicinal cannabis illegal could be hindering life changing autism research

  • Anecdotal evidence of success stories with cannabis treatment for autism is coming from parents across the world
  • Israel has just launched a revolutionary new study testing effects of medicinal cannabis on 120 autistic participants
  • CBD, the non-psychoactive seems to be the most effective cannabinoid in treatment
  • Cannabis research in the UK is severely restricted due to its illegality

Can cannabis based medicines really have to potential to be used as an effective alternative treatment for autism? Israeli scientists certainly seem to think so.

Jerusalem’s Shaare Zedek Medical Center is launching a pioneering new trial looking into medicinal marijuana’s effect on autistic people. 120 different people, ranging from low to moderate functioning autism, spanning in age from 4 years old to 30, will partake in the innovative new trial.

“There are over 700,000 people in UK who are on the autistic spectrum”

The trial was launched by Dr Adi Aran, head of the paediatric neurology department at Shaare Zedek, on the back of the success of prior research into cannabinoids and epilepsy.

Dr Aran found in a previous, smaller, trial that administering cannabinoid extracts to 70 young people suffering from both epilepsy and were on the autistic spectrum had positive results. Researchers found that the cannabinoid compound helping the autistic children with their epilepsy was also helping to reduce some of the symptoms of autism as well.

Despite hundreds, if not thousands, of anecdotal cases being reported from across the globe, this will be the world’s first clinical trial looking specifically into the potential medical marijuana can have on the symptoms of autism.

Discussing the popularity of the decision to launch the trail in an interview with The Israel Times, Dr Aran said: “Our waiting lists are full.

“Many, many families want to participate and they come from all over Israel. They hope and they heard from their friends and other families that it might help.”

It’s not just families in Israel that are desperate to try medical cannabis as an alternative for their autistic children’s pharmaceutical medication. Parents and activists from across the world have been calling out for more research to done be conducted.

One of the loudest protest has been coming from, perhaps unsurprisingly, America. MAMMA (Mothers Advocating Medical Marijuana for Autism) was set up in 2014 by parents campaigning for autism to be recognised as a qualifying condition for the medicinal herb.

Due to the shocking lack of research on MMJ’s effect on autism, advocacy group have been forced to rely heavily on anecdotal testimonials to support their case. That is not to say these do not make compelling arguments.

Miko Perez went on national TV in America to tell the world about how cannabis had “saved” her autistic’ sons life. Appearing on ABC News, the courageous mother explained how medicated brownies helped to reduce some of the more severe symptoms of autism her 10-year-old son, Joey.

Mark Zatler’s videos on his daughter’s progress with cannabis for her severe autism has captured the imagination of the world. Posting videos showing the immediate effect of MMJ on Kara’s actue symptoms of autism, such as a reduction in her uncontrollable self-harming, makes more than a compelling argument for more research to be conducted on the natural treatment.

One of the most persuasive arguments for allowing autistic children to try cannabinoid medication opposed to pharmaceutical medication is the adverse side-effects the latter can have on the child.

Currently affecting around 1 in every 68 children in the US, rates of the condition are becoming increasing common. There are only two prescription medications presently approved for the treatment of Autism; both being ‘antipsychotic medications’.

Essentially what these medications do is tranquilize the child, dulling their personalities. The pharmaceuticals that these children are subjected to are riddled with adverse side-effects which can actually make some of the symptoms of autism worse. Autistic children experience difficulties with social interactions and communication; these powerful antipsychotic medications have been reported to cause extreme sedation and lethargy, which does not help the child improve their interactions with other children.

Medicinal marijuana, on the other hand, has been reported by parents to allow their autistic children to be themselves, to live a more normal childhood. Parents and relatives of autistic children have long made claims that cannabis helps calm their child down, making them less stressed and less likely to hurt themselves, while not leaving them drugged-up zombies. If we can allow a child the decency of a normal childhood, even enhance their childhood, is it not our duty to at least look into this possibility?

While Israel is undertaking the world’s first clinical trial into MMJ and autism, there are some recent studies into the possibility of treating the illness with cannabis. Recent research on autism actually showed that deficiencies in our endocannabinoid system may play a major role in some forms of autism.

While we do not know exactly how cannabis helps autistic children, we do know that it is helping them.

There are over 700,000 people in UK who are on the autistic spectrum, meaning there are 2.8m people who have a relative on the autism spectrum. This means we have 700,000 reasons to allow more research and clinical trials looking into cannabis’ effect on autism in the UK.

We know very little about which cannabinoid will work best for treating the more acute symptoms of autism. Some seem to respond best to a mix of THC and CBD, such as Zara Katler. Others, such as Dr Aran, seem to think that CBD is the main cannabinoid to focus on; as his study will use 20:1 CBD-THC strains and tinctures. Without more research, we will remain ignorant; without more research, more autistic children will be left to suffer at the hands of pharmaceutical medication. It’s time to step up and put the needs of our most vulnerable at the head of society!

Have you treated your autistic child with medical cannabis? Do you think more research into autism and MMJ is needed in the UK? Let us know in the comments!

Mexico Legalises Medical Marijuana

Mexico Legalises Medical Marijuana

  • The bill signals the end of criminalising acts related to medicinal use of cannabis and allows scientific research on the plant
  • THC is to remain highly regulated, with medical cannabis only being permitted to contain less than 1% THC

Mexico has just joined the ranks of countries allowing its citizens the human right of choice over their medicine by passing a bill legalising cannabis for medicinal purposes.

The bill passed back in April, receiving overwhelming support from member of Congress, with an overwhelming 371 members of the Lower House of Congress voting in favour. Only 19 politicians voted against or abstained.

It also received popular support from the Mexican Senate in December, with 98 senators voting to pass the bill and seven voting against.

The ruling eliminates the prohibition and criminalisation of acts related to the medicinal use of marijuana and its scientific research.

“I welcome the approval of the therapeutic use of cannabis in Mexico.” – Secretary of Health, Dr. José Narro Robles

The law authorises the Ministry of Health to create new regulations for medical marijuana use, as well as “how to regulate the research and national production of them.”

Currently, only cannabis that is 1% or less THC (the psychoactive cannabinoid) will be permitted. The Ministry of Health will be required to study the medicinal and therapeutic effects of cannabis before creating the framework for a medical marijuana program infrastructure.

Recreational cannabis remains explicitly illegal.

Signed by Mexico’s President, Peña Nieto, the bill signals a clear push to end prohibition of cannabis in the country.

This isn’t the President’s first attempt at reducing the cost of policing cannabis in Mexico. In 2016 Nieto tried to pass a bill which would have allowed citizens to carry up to an ounce on them without fear of legal repercussions, but the bill stalled in the Senate.

His latest attempt, The Medical Marijuana Bill, however, sailed through the Senate with ease in December 2016, passing through Mexico’s lower house in parliament in April with a vote of 347-7 in favour of approval.

Voicing his support for the measure, Mexico’s Secretary of Health, Dr. José Narro Robles, said: “I welcome the approval of the therapeutic use of cannabis in Mexico.”

With more and more countries legalising cannabis for medicinal purposes, is it now time for the UK to end its war on science and compassion? Let us know in the comments below!

Did cannabis oil extend this terminally ill Fathers’ life?

Did cannabis oil extend this terminally ill Fathers’ life?

  • A father from Brighton with terminal cancer told The Argus how he believes cannabis oil may be the reason he’s still alive today
  • Marcus Gray appeared on BBC Newsnight last year to tell his story to the nation

Marcus Gray was told in February 2016 that he would not live to see his wife give birth to his daughter after he was diagnosed with stage four colorectal cancer.

Today, however, the brave father spoke to The Argus with his wife and daughter, Darcy, to explain how he believes he is still here due to medicinal cannabis.

“One of the main effects of chemo is weight loss, but the oil has completely changed that”

Speaking to The Argus, Marcus explained how he was convinced that cannabis oil had helped, “There is no doubt in my mind that the cannabis oil has had something to do with me living much longer than expected.

“The cancer has significantly reduced and there are only two cells left on my lungs.”

Marcus first learned about the potential medicinal properties of cannabis oil through his friends and even appeared on BBC Newsnight last year to explain how he thinks the oil continues to help him.

Initially using one gram of oil a day to make his chemotherapy treatment more bearable, Marcus only needs to take it periodically now, “It has definitely reduced the pain.

“Chemo made me lose my appetite and disturbed other parts of my life but the oil makes up for what the chemo takes away.”

Marcus’s wife Catherine also attested to cannabis’ wonderful medicinal properties, especially with regard to mental health, “the oil has really helped Marcus’s mindset against the cancer.

“One of the main effects of chemo is weight loss, but the oil has completely changed that. He has a good appetite, which has definitely helped his health.”

The Gray family have been so impacted by cannabis that Marcus wants to work to help legalise the medicinal herb, “If my condition improves, I plan to educate people on the positive effects of using cannabis oil medicinally.

“It can definitely help and I want to try to help the process of getting it legalised.”

Catherine also supports the use of cannabis oil for illnesses, saying said: “I will definitely support any attempt to help legalise the use of cannabis oil for health problems.”

Have had a cannabis success story? Would you treat yours or your families cancer with cannabis? Let us know in the comments!

Florida Medical Cannabis Bill

Florida Medical Cannabis Bill: Legislature vote to Pass

Florida Medical Cannabis Bill: Legislature vote to Pass

  • The Florida Medical Cannabis Bill passed through the state’s Legislature last week
  • Patients will be able to be prescribed a 70-day supply
  • Only certain illnesses and diseases will qualify for recommendation
  • Smoking cannabis will still be illegal under the bill
  • Nearly a million dollars will be dedicated to researching the medicinal potential of cannabis
  • Gov. Rick Scott said he will “absolutely” sign the bill

Patients in Florida are one step closer to having access to a choice in their medication after Florida’s Legislature finally passed a bill legalising medicinal cannabis.

Florida’s Senate passed the medicinal marijuana bill 29-6 votes in the Senate and 103-9 in the House.

Governor Rick Scott, formerly vehemently against legalising cannabis even for medicinal purposes relieved many when said he “absolutely” will sign the bill.

The bill will undoubtedly change the lives of thousands of desperate patients in Florida. Instead of turning to street dealers for unregulated cannabis, patients will now be able to get a medicinal cannabis recommendation for a 70-day supply, with two refills before having to go back to a doctor.

The 90-day waiting period which was contained within the 2014 law no longer applies, meaning patients will be able to get a recommendation from a doctor for medicinal cannabis immediately.

However, there are still some restrictions contained within the bill, for example, smoking cannabis is strictly prohibited, although the proposed bans on vaping and edibles have been removed.

Only those suffering from certain illnesses will be able to qualify for medical marijuana. The list is exclusive to:

  • Cancer
  • Epilepsy
  • Glaucoma
  • PTSD
  • ALS
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Multiple Sclerosis or a condition of the “same kind or class”

Patients will also qualify if they have chronic pain related to one of the named diseases or are terminally ill.

While that may sound like an exhaustive list of those who are desperately in need of medicinal cannabis, the bill has overlooked those who use cannabis to aid with their mental health, such as those suffering depression or anxiety.

Patients will have to be examined by a doctor in person if they want to receive a recommendation, with telemedicine (remote diagnosis and treatment by such means as phone or email) being banned under the bill.

Children will be able to be prescribed medicinal cannabis as well, but must receive the recommendation of two doctors to receive it. Pregnant women are banned from being prescribed any medicinal cannabis except from low-THC (the psychoactive cannabinoid) products.

Doctors will have to have to complete a two-hour course administered by the Florida Medical Association or the Florida Osteopathic Medical Association before being able to recommend cannabis to their patients. The course will cost $500. However, doctors who have a financial interest in cannabis, e.g. in a grower or testing lab, are banned from being able to prescribe cannabis.

Florida’s doctors will also responsible for checking the state medical marijuana registry to make sure their patient is on it, and adding to it the fact that their patient has now been given an order for marijuana.

One of the most significant parts of the bill is the fact that it gives $750,000 to the Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa to conduct medical marijuana research. It will also create the Coalition for Medicinal Cannabis Research and Education at the cancer center, which will also be responsible for research into medical marijuana.

All of these changes in the state medical marijuana industry will go into effect as soon as Florida’s Governor, Rick Scott, signs the bill into law. Fortunately, it looks like the Gov. will pass the bill which has received enormous support from Florida’s politicians. Scott said he “absolutely” intends to sign the medical marijuana bill passed Friday by the state Legislature.

What do you think of Florida’s medical marijuana bill? Is it enough or do you think there is room for improvement? Would you like to see cannabis legalized for medicinal use in your country? Let us know in the comments!

Has this British University just Proven that Cannabis Kills Cancer Cells?

Has this British University just Proven that Cannabis Kills Cancer Cells?

  • New research confirms that cannabinoids can be effective in killing leukemia cells, particularly in combination with chemotherapy
  • The study also found that cannabinoids are most effective when used after chemo treatment
  • It also confirmed that cannabinoids possess anticancer properties on their own

St. George’s University of London may have just proven that cannabis can be effective in treating certain types of cancer.

Researchers tested whether existing chemotherapy treatments worked effectively alongside the cannabinoids and whether using the drugs in a different order had an effect. What they found may revolutionize cannabis’ role in British society.

“Phytocannabinoids possess anticancer activity…” – Dr. Wai Lu

The study, led by Dr. Wai Lu, “confirmed that cannabinoids are effective in killing leukemia cells, particularly when used in combination with chemotherapy treatments.”

Researchers found that “Phytocannabinoids possess anticancer activity when used alone, and a number have also been shown to combine favourably with each other in vitro in leukaemia cells to generate improved activity.”

However, cannabinoids are not enough on their own to fully fight leukemia cells. They are most effective when after an initial dose of chemotherapy: “The most efficacious cannabinoid-pairs subsequently synergised further when combined with the chemotherapy agents, and were also able to sensitise leukaemia cells to their cytotoxic effects.”

Researchers also found that cannabinoids are most effective when used after an initial round of chemotherapy, significantly improving overall results against blood cancer cells.

They also discovered that combining cannabinoids with existing chemotherapy treatments has a better result than with just chemotherapy alone, meaning that a similar level of effect could be achieved through using a lower dose of the chemotherapy.

St. George’s claim that if this were translated to humans, “this lower dose of chemotherapy would mean that the side-effects of chemotherapy could be lessened.”

Dr. Wai Liu said: “We have shown for the first time that the order in which cannabinoids and chemotherapy are used is crucial in determining the overall effectiveness of this treatment.”

Smoking cannabis, however, will not have a similar effect: “These extracts are highly concentrated and purified, so smoking marijuana will not have a similar effect.

“…cannabinoids are a very exciting prospect in oncology, and studies such as ours serve to establish the best ways that they should be used to maximize a therapeutic effect.”

Cannabinoids are the active chemicals in cannabis, known more specifically as phytocannabinoids. When extracted from the plant and purified, they have been shown to possess anticancer properties, especially in certain cancers of the brain.

What could this mean for British medicine? Going off the study’s conclusions, it’s hard to imagine a future without cannabinoids being central to our health system. 4,584 people died from Leukemia in the UK in 2015. If we have the potential to save their lives, is it not our duty as a compassionate society to reclassify cannabis away from Schedule 1 status so more research can be done and more people can be save?

Let us know your thoughts on the study’s findings in the comments!