The UK’s first specialist medical cannabis clinic is now open in Greater Manchester, following a government’s announcement on the subject of medical marijuana. Specialist doctors could prescribe cannabis products to patients for medicinal starting in November. Patients at The Beeches will pay $240 for appointments with doctors and between over $700 a month for a prescription.
A new private clinic in Greater Manchester has become the UK’s first medical cannabis center. Patients at The Beeches, in Cheadle, will pay $240 for appointments with doctors and between $700 and $800 a month for a prescription. However, decisions to prescribe cannabis will be taken on a case-by-case basis, and will only be considered after trying the mainstream licensed products.
The director of The Medical Cannabis Clinics, which runs The Beeches, is Prof Mike Barnes, who last year helped secure the first medical cannabis license for epilepsy sufferer Alfie Dingley.
Doctors will only prescribe medical marijuana when the patient has a special clinical need. The clinical director at The Beeches private health center Professor Mike Barnes, helped to secure the first medical cannabis license for young epilepsy sufferer Alfie Dingley.
What do doctors say?
Prof Barnes said: “Patients suffering from chronic pain and other serious neurological or psychiatric conditions have been crying out for this kind of life-changing treatment. Therefore, this clinic will represent a lifeline to those who have found other treatments ineffective. This also brings the UK into line with other countries. The hope is that, over time, patients all around the country will have access to the relief that they need.
Doctors at the clinic say that marijuana will provide relief to those experiencing chronic pain. However, only a few patients can successfully access such treatments via the NHS, despite the change in the law.
Does marijuana help?
Dr. David McDowell prescribed medical cannabis to Open University student Forzana Nasir. Nasir suffers from the genetic condition of Ehlers Danlos Syndrome. It leaves her in severe pain and suffering from nausea and vomiting.
Since using medical cannabis, Nasir has gone from taking 13 different medications a day to three. “Having access to this medicine allows me to ease my chronic pain which turns an unbearable day into a manageable day. It has been life-changing for me. I was almost bed-bound before this and now I have a much greater quality of life.”
“It is so important that other patients in the UK who are suffering can have the same opportunity. This clinic opening is a significant step forward for healthcare in this country.”
How does it work?
Barnes makes it clear that the clinic will not be a legal cover for recreational marijuana sales. An initial referral can only come from a general practitioner at the clinic or inpatient clinic: “No one will get a referral for an appointment without a reason. We will be very strict in maintaining the reputation of a serious institution where marijuana serves as a medication for appropriate medical reasons. Like other drugs, cannabis only works when its benefits take precedence over side effects.
It’s a private clinic that offers patients a variety of treatment programs with medical marijuana. Patients with severe illnesses have been asking national health authorities to recognize such treatment. However, the laws remained repressive and it is very difficult to reverse negative stereotypes.
(Featured Image by Aswin Mahesh)
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