Monday, 26 September 2016

APPG Report ‘Accessing Medicinal Cannabis: Meeting Patient’sNeeds’ – Report of the Inquiry of the APPG for Drug Policy Reform intomedicinal cannabis: (click for report


‘Cannabis: The Evidence forMedical Use’ by Professor Michael P Barnes MD FRCP Honorary Professor ofNeurological Rehabilitation, Newcastle University and Dr Jennifer C BarnesDPsychol Clinical Psychologist, Northumberland, Tyne & Wear NHS FoundationTrust (click for report)

The APPG Report launched on the 13th September emphatically calls on the UK government to legalise medical cannabis based on the results of their 7 month inquiry into the issue and on the findings of an independent review of global evidence commissioned by them that ran alongside the Inquiry

According to Caroline Lucas MP, co-chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group, ‘Many hundreds of thousands of people in the UK are already taking cannabis for primarily medical reasons.  It is totally unacceptable that they should face the added stress of having to break the law to access their medicine.  This a matter of compassion and human rights.  The government should have the political courage to view the issue of medical cannabis separately from any wider drugs reform and act urgently.’

According to Baroness Molly Meacher, co-chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group, ‘The findings of our inquiry and review of evidence from across the world are clear.  Cannabis works as a medicine for a number of medical conditions.  The evidence has been strong enough to persuade a growing number of countries and US states to legalise access to medical cannabis.  Against this background, the UK scheduling of cannabis as a substance that has no medical value is irrational.’

During the inquiry, the Group has taken evidence from 623 patients, representatives of the medical professions and people with knowledge of how medical cannabis is regulated across the world.  The Group has commissioned Professor Mike Barnes, Professor of Neurological Rehabilitation and consultant neurologist and consultant in rehabilitation medicine and acknowledged expert in the subject, to undertake the most comprehensive review of evidence from the around the world in relation to this issue.  The Report – Cannabis : The Evidence for Medical Use (the Barnes Report) is published  alongside the results of the APPG inquiry.  The report concludes that there is good evidence that medical cannabis helps alleviate the symptoms of chronic pain, including neuropathic pain; spasticity (often associated with Multiple Sclerosis); nausea and vomiting, particularly in the context of chemotherapy; and in the management of anxiety.

According to Professor Mike Barnes , ‘We analysed over 20,000 scientific and medical reports.  The results are clear.  Cannabis has a medical benefit for a wide range of conditions.  I believe that with greater research, it has the potential to help with an even greater number of conditions. But this research is being stifled by the government’s current classification of cannabis as having no medical benefit’

Click here for the evidence review Cannabis: The Evidence for Medical Use

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