On the 9th March the UK’s first medicinal cannabis clinic opened at The Beeches Consulting Centre in Manchester.
The clinic located in Cheadle, will be led by pain specialist Dr David McDowell and consultant neurologist, Professor Mike Barnes, who will act as clinical director.
From 1st November 2018 clinicians have been able to prescribe medicinal cannabis products for patients in specialised circumstances.
Each case will be decided upon individually and cannabis will only be prescribed when a patient has a clinical need that cannot be helped by other medications.
The new law does not limit the type of conditions that can be treated by medicinal cannabis and approval from an expert panel is no longer required.
Professor Mike Barnes helped to secure the first cannabis licence for Alfie Dingley who suffers from severe epilepsy.
Professor Barnes highlighted the importance of the new clinic: “Patients suffering from chronic pain and other serious neurological or psychiatric conditions have been crying out for this kind of life-changing treatment.
“This clinic will represent a lifeline to those who have found other treatments ineffective. This also brings the UK into line with other countries when it comes to pain management.
“The hope is that over time patients all around the country and not just in Manchester will have access to the relief that they need.”
The clinics prices start as £200 for a consultation and a private monthly prescription ranging from £600-£700.
Medicinal cannabis will provide new hope for sufferers of chronic pain such as 32-year old Forzana Nasir who suffers from Ehlers Danlos Syndrome: “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 bedbound before this and now I have 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.”