Only a few days to go: We’re raising £25,000 to keep TheyWorkForYou running and make sure people across the UK can hold their elected representatives to account.

Donate to our crowdfunder

Medical Cannabis Under Prescription

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 4:59 pm on 20th May 2019.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Mike Penning Mike Penning Conservative, Hemel Hempstead 4:59 pm, 20th May 2019

I completely agree with my hon. Friend. I have been referring to Teagan, and he is her MP. As he knows, she got her medication seven days late, and I am convinced that she would not have got it if we had not secured the urgent question, which is why such debates are important.

I used to be a Minister, and I always panicked about UQs. I always asked, “Why don’t we just do a statement? It is a damn sight easier, and we can control the agenda going forward.” The business managers did not always agree with me on that point.

I might be wrong, but as far as I am aware from our investigations the only NHS prescription that has been issued was through the Home Office. Alfie Dingley got his medication through the panel the Home Secretary set up with the expert group in the Home Office. As far as I am aware, since we changed the law in November no NHS prescription has been honoured. We have had trusts clearly threatening consultants not to do this and we have had their professional bodies do the same—I have seen some of the correspondence. As I alluded to earlier, families have been threatened with social services for bringing the product into the hospital where their child was being treated, even though this was a prescribed drug that is perfectly legal in this country today.

The real issue is: why can only those who have the money, those who have a donor and those who have crowdfunded, or, as in the case of my constituents, those to whom one of the manufacturers has given it for free—there is no way in the world they could afford this, and I thank the manufacturer for doing that, particularly for the family—get this? In the country that is so proud of the NHS, how on earth have we got into a situation where those who are poor do not get it?