UK Gets One Step Closer To Medical Marijuana Legalization

UK Gets One Step Closer To Medical Marijuana Legalization

Marijuana has numerous therapeutic benefits and should be rescheduled under federal law, England’s top medical officer announced on Tuesday.

In a report reviewing the medical potential of cannabis, professor Sally Davies pointed to several health conditions the plant is known to treat. The list of maladies where there is “conclusive evidence” of marijuana’s therapeutic benefits includes chronic pain, chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting and muscle spasms due to multiple sclerosis.

There’s “moderate evidence” that marijuana can improve “short-term sleep outcomes” for individuals suffering from a wide range of other health conditions, according to the report.

“Schedule 1 drugs by definition have little or no therapeutic potential,” Davies concluded. “As summarized in this review, there is now conclusive evidence of medicinal benefit of cannabis based products for certain medical conditions, and reasonable evidence of benefit for indications that they may be useful under restricted circumstances.”

“My recommendation is that cannabis based medicinal products are moved out of Schedule 1 of the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001. It may be pragmatic for them all to be moved to Schedule 2 pending a fuller review by [the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs] that can differentiate different products into the appropriate different Schedules.”

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The report is part of a two-stage review of laws governing cannabis in England. Last month, the country’s interior ministry ordered the review—due in part to increased interest in reforming Britain’s marijuana laws in order to provide relief for patients. High-profile cases of children suffering from epilepsy being denied treatment ignited calls for reform.

In February, it was reported that lawmakers would take up debate over the country’s cannabis policy after the family of a six-year-old boy, Alfie Dingley, sought government approval to treat his severe epilepsy with marijuana. Prime Minister Theresa May (Conservative) rejected that appeal, however, and lawmakers ultimately ran out of time to vote on a proposed bill.

More recently, authorities confiscated a cannabis-based epilepsy medication from the mother of a 12-year-old boy at London’s Heathrow Airport. In a surprising win for patients and reform advocates, the government used “an exceptional power” to get the marijuana oil back to the family after the child was later admitted to the hospital for his severe seizures, Reuters reported.

What’s next?

Now that the chief medical officer has submitted her report outlining the therapeutic benefits of cannabis, the next step is for the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs to review current marijuana laws and make a recommendation about its scheduling status. The review will take about three weeks, and if the recommendation aligns with the medical officer’s report, its likely that medical marijuana legalization will be on the horizon for England.

U.K. Home Secretary Sajid Javid said he ordered the second phase of the review based on the Davies’s report. Javid previously said that “[i]t has become clear to me since becoming home secretary that the position we find ourselves in currently is not satisfactory.”

“It is not satisfactory for the parent, it’s not satisfactory for the doctors and it’s not satisfactory for me,” he said, according to PoliticsHome. “I’ve now come to the conclusion that it is time to review the scheduling of cannabis.”

Canada’s Marijuana Legalization Bill Gets Final Approval From Lawmakers

See the original article published on Marijuana Moment below:

UK Gets One Step Closer To Medical Marijuana Legalization

English Woman Jailed in Dubai For THC Positive Urine Test

English Woman Jailed in Dubai For THC Positive Urine Test

Dubai is the most populated of all 7 political territories that make up the The United Arab Emirates, which is home to some of the strictest, no tolerance, marijuana policies in the world. Even the slightest suspicion of marijuana possession can turn ugly very quickly for residents and visitors alike. Unfortunately for one British woman, even a cannabis positive urine sample may result in a sentence of four years in a Dubai prison. This has happened without her being found in possession of any amount of actual marijuana or derivative products. It was simply a positive urine test that resulted in a conviction.

The 25-year-old woman was prosecuted recently by the Dubai Criminal Court for simply having consumed hashish, and sentenced to four years in jail followed by deportation back to England once the term has been served. The woman was never found to be in possession of cannabis in any form. The only evidence was a urine sample that tested positive for THC. Back in February of this year, police invaded and searched her home because of an anonymous tip.

With the help of her father, the woman has appealed this decision on the grounds that she was prescribed medical marijuana by her physician in London to treat multiple debilitating medical conditions. The Dubai Court of Appeal has delayed it’s ruling over this, to reportedly consult with physicians first.

photo credit: aaciminallaw

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