First Medical Cannabis Clinic Approved In Scotland
The very first medical cannabis clinic has been approved by regulators in Scotland, with initial appointments available from today, March 22, onwards.
Sapphire Medical Clinic, located in the central belt city of Stirling, will provide safe access to medical cannabis for patients based in Scotland. Patients will be able to receive treatment for a wide range of issues, including back pain, arthritis and anxiety.
Medical cannabis was rescheduled under UK law in November 2018, allowing it to be prescribed under certain circumstances. This legislative change moved cannabis from schedule 1 under the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001, meaning it wasn’t regarded to have therapeutic value, up to schedule 2.
In a press release, Dr Mikael Sodergren, managing director of Sapphire Medical, said:
We are delighted to be the first clinic to be registered with HIS, which is a testament to the robust clinical governance framework we have established in evaluating patients for treatment with medical cannabis.
By capturing clinical outcomes through the UK Medical Cannabis Registry, we will significantly contribute to the evidence base and ultimately allow more patients to benefit from medical cannabis as a treatment option.
Susan Beckley, from Forres, is currently awaiting an appointment at Sapphire Medical for issues with multiple sclerosis and chronic pain.
Remarking on this new announcement, she said:
Now Scottish patients like myself can access legal medical cannabis with the peace of mind we are being treated by specialists within a HIS-regulated clinic. This option could be life changing for patients.
41-year-old Andie Connolly-Brown, from Edinburgh, suffers with complex PTSD and anxiety and has previously tried a variety of conventional therapies to treat her conditions.
Commenting on the announcement, she said:
Having access to medical cannabis is a lifeline for me. Today’s news that Sapphire Medical Clinics are now registered with Healthcare Improvement Scotland is timely, my anxiety in particular has been made worse by the Covid-19 lockdown so safe and affordable access to medical cannabis is welcome.
The clinic will reportedly offer virtual appointments at first, and will go on to offer face-to-face consultations once coronavirus restrictions are lifted.
As reported by BBC News, the Scottish government has stated that it has no influence over prescribing cannabis, and it was specialist clinicians who decided to prescribe the drug.
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