MP calls on Home Office to resolve cannabis legalisation case

Christine Jardine wants to see UK Government action in the case. Picture: TSPLChristine Jardine wants to see UK Government action in the case. Picture: TSPL
Christine Jardine wants to see UK Government action in the case. Picture: TSPL

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An Edinburgh MP has called on the Home Office to step in and resolve the case of a five year-old with epilepsy whose mother says cannabis oil is the only treatment that can ease his suffering.

The Evening News revealed how Karen Gray, whose son Murray suffers up to 12 seizures a day, has “hit a brick wall” in her attempts convince the NHS to provide Cannabidiol (CBD) to treat him.

Cannabis-based medicines are banned in the UK, and regulation of their use is reserved to Westminster.

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The appeal follows publication attention on the case of six year-old Alfie Dingley, from Kenilworth in Warwickshire, whose parents are seeking a license that will allow him to use CBD to help deal with up to 30 seizures a day.

Ms Gray’s MP, Christine Jardine, has now called on the Home Office to clarify rules for health boards across the UK, so that all those who need cannabis oil products are able to access them.

In a written parliamentary question, Ms Jardine has asked Amber Rudd to set out “what steps have been taken to make the substance accessible for those who need it for the management of chronic and terminal illness”.

The Liberal Democrat MP said she was “delighted” that a special licence was under consideration for Alfie Dingley, but added that “more needs to be done” to clarify the position for other families.

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“My constituent Murray Gray is in a very similar situation but still cannot access the medication he needs or the medical advice that his mother wants on cannabis oil,” Ms Jardine said. “We need clarity for all health boards and changes in the law to allow medical use of Cannabis.

“I have asked the Home Secretary top clarify the legal position on cannabis based medicinal products and to expedite special licenses for children, indeed everyone, like Alfie and Murray, so that they can receive the life changing medication they need.”

A 370,000-signature petition on behalf of Alfie Dingley, who responded to cannabis oil treatment in the Netherlands, has been submitted at Westminster, calling for cannabis oil products to be made legal in the UK for medical purposes.

Ms Gray told how there is a “one in a hundred chance that Murray could die from a seizure”, and asked the Evening News to publish a distressing video of her son suffering a seizure in order to raise awareness.

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Murray’s family has also received the backing of the Scottish Government, which has asked for rules around the medical use of cannabis to be devolved to Scotland.

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