08 Oct Access Medicinal Cannabis. Stage 2

Bedrocan 'cannabis flos'

Bediol 'cannabis flos granulate'

Bediol ‘cannabis flos granulate’

Bedrocan ‘cannabis flos’

Legal Medicinal Cannabis In Britain ACHIEVED!

Do You Want Access To Legal Medicinal Cannabis?

IMPORTANT UPDATE: Definitive Legal Advice On Medicinal Cannabis In The UK

This is the second in a series of articles that will set out, in detail, our best knowledge to date of how to access legal medicinal cannabis. The first article in this series ‘Access Medicinal Cannabis. Stage 1’ is here.

The law against the medicinal use of cannabis is cruel, irrational and has no basis in any evidence. It must be overturned and the only effective way to do that is through due process. All forms of protest have been shown to be ineffective. The only way to defeat this policy is to seize control of it and force change.

We have learned from research, from consulting with lawyers, doctors and scientists but most of all from experience. What we explain is current best practice. This is your best chance if you need access to medicinal cannabis now.

The steps involved in this process are really very simple:

1. Obtain prescription from UK doctor.
2. Apply for personal import licence.
3. Make arrangements with a Dutch or Belgian pharmacy.
4. Collect medicine and declare at customs with supporting documents

Of course, each stage is a minefield and depends on the individual. Each case really needs individual guidance which is available from CLEAR for those prepared to invest the considerable time, effort and financial risk which is involved.

This advice and guidance is, of course, offered entirely at your own risk. You must make your own assessment of the risks involved. My opinion is that the worst that can happen is that you lose your medicine and the cost of the trip – but that is my opinion, you have to choose to take the risk yourself.

Stage 2

Once you have a prescription for a Bedrocan product from a UK doctor you are in a very strong position. A range of options are now open to you and you must decide how you want to proceed.

The quickest but also the most expensive route is to make contact with a Dutch or Belgian pharmacy and arrange to make the trip to collect your medicine. Many people, in need of medicinal cannabis, will not be fit enough to make the journey or may be unable to afford it, let alone the cost of the medicine. This does not mean you can do nothing. You can still play your part in the fight to change this cruel and irrational policy.

So whether or not you intend to travel, the first thing to do is apply for a personal import licence from the Home Office. The application form can be downloaded here.

It ‘s a very simple form but it does need to be filled in correctly.

Page 1 is self explanatory and just requires the name and address of the doctor who wrote the prescription. Page 2 requires your name, address and you must specify which country you intend to travel to and when. Usually this will be Holland or Belgium and departure date/return date can be specified as “To be confirmed once licence is issued”.

The words you choose may make a big difference. It’s important to use the word dronabinol (the International Nonproprietary Name (INN) for THC) but also to include the name of the Bedrocan product that your prescription is for. An example is shown below for Bedrobinol but you will need to adjust this if your doctor has prescribed a different product.

licence bedrob

You then need to send the application form with a copy of your prescription to the Home Office. Whether you do this by email or in the post, ensure you keep a copy and a record of the date.

Do not be surprised if you receive no response from the Home Office. Ignoring such applications seems to be its first line of defence. You must continue sending reminders until you do get a response.

You may receive a reply stating that you do not need a licence if you are travelling for less than three months. In this case, write back and ask for confirmation that a copy of your prescription will be sufficient authorisation.

In the end, you should expect your application to be refused and that is exactly what you want! The Home Office knows this and will do all it can to avoid giving a clear cut refusal. Why? Because a refusal immediately opens up the possibility of an application to the High Court for judicial review.

Keep copies of all your correspondence with the Home Office and if you do decide to take the next step and travel to collect your medicine then take the correspondence with you.

If you decide not to travel then a refusal from the Home Office is an ideal opportunity to get your MP involved. You can also then consider whether you want to get involved in judicial review proceedings. If you’re on benefits then in a case like this it is almost certain that you would be able to obtain legal aid.

CLEAR members who are on our medicinal users panel will get individual guidance on all aspects of this process. We will submit the licence application for you and manage all the correspondence. We are also in touch with lawyers who are fully briefed on these circumstances and ready to take on your case.