A mother from the United Kingdom (UK) speaks out in frustration that the medical cannabis shipments from the Netherlands will cease due to Brexit.
Danielle Davis’ daughter, Sophia Gibson, who suffers from Dravet syndrome, has found great relief in medical cannabis. She was the first person who was granted a long-term license for cannabis access. The United Kingdom Department of Health recently confirmed that her medicine, called Bedrocan, would no longer be accessible following Brexit (the transition of the United Kingdom leaving the European Union (EU), which officially went into effect on December 31, 2020). Prescriptions are no longer legal between the UK and an EU members states, according to the BBC.
Sophia and her family aren’t completely left hanging at the moment though. A government spokesperson confirmed that it is “working urgently with the Dutch government to find a solution.” Likewise, Belfast Health Trust stated that it was “seeking alternative medication in conjunction with expert advisors and in discussion with Sophia’s family. Sophia’s consultant has contacted her mum to discuss her concerns and options available.”
Sophia hasn’t had an active seizure since 2018, and her progress has been impressive after beginning a regular cannabis prescription. “”Her seizures have reduced tremendously – she can still take a few at night but they do not require emergency meds and she is not taking drop seizures during the day,” Davis told the BBC. “”It really has changed her wee life – her learning has come on, her speech has come on and she can now run. It sounds so silly but just to see her so happy and relaxed—listening to all her new words and hearing her sing—she’s just such a wee dote.”
As of Davis’ interview BBC, the family only has about nine weeks of medicine left. To think about her daughter no longer having access is “devastating.” With hope, the members of various UK government agencies will remain hard at work to allow Sophia and others like her access to the medicine she needs.