Lifelong epilepsy sufferer says medicinal cannabis would restore his independence

George Vass has suffered epilepsy since he was 7 and is now raising money and awareness for the condition through his bowls club. Photo: Brianne Makin GEORGE Vass was driving along the M5 when his first seizure in years took hold. He lost control, crashing into the car next to him, before being hit by two other cars, unable to avoid the accident. It was another step back in a life dogged by epilepsy. “When I hit that lady it nearly killed me ... and after that I had to stop driving again,” Mr Vass said. That was 18 years ago and the 73-year-old from Beverly Hills has struggled to maintain is diminishing independence ever since. Health Minister Greg Hunt announced last week companie

Tamworth Football Club honours former team mate Dan Haslam

HELPING HAND: Tamworth FC's Kurt Murphy hands a $3500 cheque to United in Compassion founder Lucy Haslam at Sportspower on Saturday. Photo: Contributed TWO years since Dan Haslam lost his lengthy battle with bowel cancer, and his mates are still fighting for what he championed for – medical cannabis. Tamworth Football Club donated $3,500 to United in Compassion (UIC) – a local group advocating for patient access to medicinal cannabis – in honour of their former teammate on Saturday. The money was raised at the Dan Haslam Memorial Trophy football match between two local football teams, Tamworth FC and North Companions. Tamworth FC player and Dan’s good mate Kurt Barrow handed over the

Far North fight for medicinal cannabis far from over

Debbie Cliff who suffers from EDS poses at a gathering of supporters for the legalization of medicinal cannabis along the Cairns Esplanade on Saturday to raise awareness and benefits for ill patients.Picture Justin Brierty MEDICINAL cannabis may soon be available to those who need it most, but not all patients in the Far North are celebrating. Earlier this week, Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt announced the drug could be imported and available within eight weeks. Leichhardt MP Warren Entsch welcomed the move but said it had been taking too long for legitimate patients to access medicinal cannabis since it was legalised last year. “There’s still a fair journey to go. I understand the co

Cannabis changes ‘won’t help my son’

Lanai Carter and her son Lindsay say the changes are too little and more needs to be one to make access to medicinal cannabis easier, faster and cheaper. THE mother of a Loganholme teenage boy who needs medicinal cannabis to stop violent seizures said today’s federal government changes to the drug’s importation regulations were not going to help her son. Lanai Carter said her 19-year-old son Lindsay, who has a brain tumour, would still have to jump through bureaucracy at both state and federal levels and there was still no guarantee of a regular supply of the drug. She said it would still take months to get the drug for her son and buying imported cannabis would be expensive as it was no

Medical Cannabis Available For Sale In Australia In Just Weeks

The government has approved companies here to sell it. Getty Images/iStockphoto The change means more certainty in supply for Australians in need. Medical cannabis will be available for sale in Australia in a matter of weeks, after the Federal Government approved plans to let domestic companies sell the products. Health Minister Greg Hunt announced on Wednesday that the Government would allow certain companies in Australia to import medical cannabis from overseas, and sell it to patients who have been prescribed the product by their doctor. Currently patients can access medical cannabis from overseas sources, but Hunt said access was on a case-by-case basis and required patients to wait ma

First medicinal cannabis crop harvested at secret Victorian site

The first Victorian Government medical cannabis. Picture: Supplied THE Andrews Government has harvested Australia’s first medical cannabis crop. ­ Canberra has also given the green light for a commercial company to also start growing plants. The cannabis, planted at a ­secret site last April, will be ­reserved for children with ­severe epilepsy this year. The crop is now being tested and formulated in preparation for the first patients. Victoria last year became the first Australian state to legalise cannabis for medicinal purposes. The Andrews Government has harvested Australia’s first medical cannabis crop. Picture: Supplied The Andrews Government has harvested Australia’s first medi

When The Government Legalised Medicinal Cannabis Things Only Got Harder For The Seriously Ill

The future of medicinal cannabis in Australia is embroiled in a battle between two access pathways. It was February 2016 and the media was frantically reporting the Australian government’s decision to pass new laws that would “pave the way” for people suffering from chronic illness to use medicinal cannabis. Frederic J. Brown / AFP / Getty Images Sussan Ley, federal health minister at the time, applauded the day as historic. Finally, she said, people who required access to medicinal cannabis would not be treated as criminals. In September 2016 the Therapeutic Good Administration handed down its verdict: medicinal cannabis would be legal and the government would regulate its use. From Novem

Medical cannabis 'needs real law behind it': One Nation MP

One Nation MP Steve Dickson, Independent MP Rob Pyne and councillor Jonathan Sri lead a rally supporting medicinal cannabis outside Queensland Parliament. One Nation MP Steve Dickson has begun his first week in Parliament representing his new party by proposing steps to make whole cannabis plants available for sick Queenslanders - and subsidised by the government. The member for Buderim, who has been moved from his place among his former colleagues to a lonely seat in the back row since defecting from the LNP, introduced a private member's bill on Tuesday morning. Mr Dickson cited medicinal cannabis as his reason for leaving the LNP, but members of his party voiced their doubt. The Public

UK set for cannabis boom as GW Pharma storms ahead

GW Pharmaceuticals grows cannabis in the UK. The UK could become the world’s biggest grower and processor of cannabis plants destined for use in prescription medications after one of the country’s most promising biotechs announced plans to ramp up its production of the plant. GW Pharmaceuticals, which in 2010 launched the world’s first prescription cannabis-derived drug in the form of multiple sclerosis treatment Sativex, is boosting cultivation and manufacturing of the crop this year ahead of the launch of another promising experimental drug called Epidiolex, which has shown to be hugely effective in treating children with a deadly form of epilepsy. The British company plans to file Epidi

Medicinal cannabis round table

Matthew Rowland. Patients suffering from chronic pain are one step closer to accessing medicinal cannabis in South Australia. Since November 1 last year, certain cannabis products have been considered in the same class as medicines such morphine, available under prescription by authorised medical specialists in South Australia. The state government hosted key stakeholders at a round table on January 30 to discuss the potential for the establishment of industrial hemp and medicinal cannabis industries in the state. Murray Bridge man Matthew Rowland attended the round table as a representative for the Cannabis Council of South Australia. He said he had seen many people suffering from all q

GW Pharma's Cannabis-Derived Drug Shows Promise in Brain Cancer Study

British-based GW Pharmaceuticals​ received more good news regarding its cannabis-based drug development efforts. The drug-maker published positive Phase 2 data from an exploratory placebo-controlled study testing a combination treatment of active cannabis ingredients tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol (THC: CBD) on 21 patients diagnosed with an aggressive brain tumor called recurrent glioblastoma multiforme (GBM). GW started the study with an initial safety phase so the investigators could gage the safety of THC: CBD in conjunction with dose-intense temozolomide, which is used as the standard first-line treatment for GMB. Next, the team moved into the randomized placebo-controlled

Pro-cannabis campaign flies high in Canberra

Legalise cannabis protesters outside Parliament House in Canberra. A BLOW-UP phial of medicinal cannabis stood tall in the nation's capital today as marijuana advocates from around Australia and the North Coast campaigned for the legal use of the controversial drug. Nimbin Hemp Embassy president, Michael Balderstone estimated 20 people from the Nimbin area were among the 200 protesters crowded in front of Parliament House in Canberra, who called for the legalisation of cannabis. Green balloons flew high as protesters held signs which promoted home grown cannabis and others accused politicians, who support prohibition, as supporters of organised crime. Independent senators Derryn Hinc

Trial to help users turn over a new leaf

Help at hand: Trial participants must be committed to quitting and be prepared to attend clinic visits and take medication as directed. HUNTER researchers are looking for 140 cannabis-dependent users who use the drug four or more times a week to participate in a world-first treatment trial. The trial will investigate the use of nabiximols for the management of cannabis dependence. “The trial will examine the efficacy, safety and cost-effectiveness of the medication for treating cannabis dependent patients in the community,” Hunter New England Health Drug and Alcohol Service Area Director and senior staff specialist Adrian Dunlop said. “We currently provide psychosocial treatments for canna

Medicinal cannabis rally in Canberra on Tuesday

Karen Burge. A NEWCASTLE group recently raided by the NSW police is sending a bus to Canberra on Tuesday for the first of a series of “Enough is Enough” medicinal cannabis rallies. Karen Burge from the Church of Ubuntu said the Newcastle group was one of at least five “compassionate care” organisations – as underground suppliers of medicinal cannabis call themselves – to have been raided by police in the past two years. A flyer for the rally shows Mr Burge is one of about a dozen speakers, including controversial disbarred doctor Andrew Katelaris. Ms Burge said the publicity from the November 30 Newcastle raid had generated a huge increase in the number of people seeking help from th

Afghanistan veteran pushes for medicinal cannabis to be recognised as treatment for PTSD

Michael Harding and partner Bek Houghton, from Lawnton, who have launched Weeded Warriors. AN AFGHANISTAN veteran with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PSTD) wants medicinal cannabis to be recognised as an effective and legal treatment for his condition. Lawnton’s Michael Harding said he was medically discharged from the Royal Australian Army with PTSD and conversion disorder in 2012. He began using cannabis to treat his symptoms about five years ago after traditional, prescribed medicines did not work for him. “I was on four different psychotropic medications at once. I was so drugged out I wouldn’t feel anything,” he said. Harding said cannabis had given back his quality of life and h

Medicinal Cannabis in SA may produce lucrative jobs

A worker tends to cannabis plants at a medical marijuana plantation near the northern Israeli city of Safed June 11, 2012. South Australia government has held a meeting to discuss the possibility of putting up cannabis and hemp industry in the state. The industry was considered as it could produce lucrative jobs for the state. SA has the highest unemployment rate in the country. Manufacturing Minister Kyam Maher said that the government was eager to explore options. The government brought some important points that would drive the legislation in the state. SA primarily brought up to the stakeholders the economic opportunities of creating a medicinal cannabis industry as well as the produ

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