A dying man has pleaded with the Home Office to return the cannabis oil he relies on to ease his symptoms.
Colin Robson has a brain tumour, and has found that the CBD oil has eased his pain, and boosted both his mood and energy levels.
The 44-year-old was diagnosed with cancer a year ago, and travelled to Holland in 2018 where he was given a prescription of the substance by a doctor in Amsterdam.
But now the oil has been confiscated by Border Force, leaving him more susceptible to seizures – and at risk of having his chemotherapy stopped.
Mr Robson, from Boddam, near Peterhead, has appealed the decision and provided the prescription from the doctor in the Netherlands and from his own GP in Aberdeen but has been rejected.
His own GP had argued the CBD oil had improved Mr Robson’s general well-being, including his mood, energy, pain control and appetite.
As it currently stands, it is illegal to import cannabis-based products for medicinal use into the UK without the prescription of a specialist doctor and the appropriate Home Office licence.
But Mr Robson has appealed to the authorities to give him back his oil, which was taken to a depot south of the border. However, Mr Robson has appealed to the authorities to return the oil he claims is making a difference to his life.
Mr Robson, who was suffering three or four seizures daily before using it, said: “I wish I didn’t need it but this cancer is just so aggressive.
“It has come down to me having a steady supply of this oil.
“Until I get it back they are going to stop my chemotherapy. It is important for them to release this.”
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Last night, a government spokesman said he sympathised with Mr Robson and others in a similar situation.
Ministers announced changes to allow doctors to prescribe cannabis to patients last year, following several high-profile cases including that of young epilepsy sufferers Alfie Dingley and Billy Caldwell.
He said: “We sympathise with those families dealing so courageously with challenging conditions and the government has changed the law so specialist doctors can prescribe cannabis-based products for medicinal use where there is a clinical evidence of benefit.
“It is unlawful to import cannabis-based products for medicinal use to the UK without the prescription of a specialist doctor on the GMC’s specialist register and a Home Office importation licence.
“Border Force has a duty to enforce the law and stop the unlawful import of controlled substances into the UK.”
Home Secretary Sajid Javid decided to relax the rules about the circumstances in which medicinal cannabis can be prescribed in November 2018.
The move to reschedule the products came after an expert advice from a specially commissioned review.
It also followed two major cases involving two young epilepsy sufferers Alfie Dingley and Billy Caldwell, whose conditions appeared to be helped by cannabis oil.
Their families welcomed the change of direction on the prescription of cannabis.
Alfie’s mother, Hannah Deacon, said: “We urge the medical world to get behind these reforms so they can help the tens of thousands of people who are in urgent need of help.
“I have personally seen how my son’s life has changed due to the medical cannabis he is now prescribed.”
Billy Caldwell’s mother, Charlotte Caldwell, said: “It’s been a treasure just out of reach for what seems like forever, but to see it in writing from the government is incredible.
“This isn’t about Billy and me, it’s about a nation.”
Mr Javid said he decided to act after hearing about the “heartbreaking” cases involving the boys and hoped the changes would help who can benefit from the prescription of medicinal cannabis.
Full story is available here.