Scotland Opens Its First Medical Marijuana Clinic

by Shanti
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Will weed be legal in Scotland? Access to medical marijuana will soon become a reality in Scotland. The country’s very first medical marijuana clinic will be open for business in the coming months. 

For Scottish medical marijuana patients the clinic opening is good news. It means they will have greater access to MMJ treatment than ever before.

The name of the clinic is Sapphire Medical Clinic. It is located in Allan Park, Stirling Scotland, a place better known as “the central belt”. 

Sapphire Medical Clinic will be the only MMJ clinic in the entire country. A UK Medical Cannabis registry will capture data of the clinic. The data will provide necessary information to advance  Scotland’s MMJ industry. “By capturing clinical outcomes through the UK Medical Cannabis Registry we will significantly contribute to the evidence base and ultimately allow more patients to benefit from medical cannabis as a treatment option.” according to Dr. Mikael Sodergren.

Is weed legal in Scotland? Scotland’s medical marijuana industry began more than two years ago in 2018. At that time, legislators moved marijuana from Schedule I to Schedule II. Drugs with no therapeutic value belong in Schedule I. 

Schedule II is the placement for drugs with known medical use and prescription. Marijuana has known medicinal value. Administration of marijuana though controlled channels like a clinic, allows for marijuana prescriptions.

Scotland’s new found access to marijuana comes on the heels of two major events.

  1.  The WHO’s acknowledgment of marijuana’s medicinal value in November 2020 and
  2.  The EU’s ruling on the French ban of cannabis products in December 2020.

Following these developments Scotland granted its people medical marijuana access.

Under Schedule II, there must be “clear published evidence of benefit”. Once a substance meets this threshold it can be prescribed in Scotland. Qualified doctors could prescribe marijuana once it moved to Schedule II.

Obtaining a prescription is one thing. Getting the prescription filled is quite another. Before the clinic filling a prescription meant traveling to a marijuana-friendly country.  The only other option being illegal market vendors. 

Lisa Quarrell experienced the difficulties of getting marijuana. As the mother of an eight-year-old son Cole with a rare form of severe epilepsy she needed marijuana. The quality of life for Cole depended on it. But, before the clinic buying marijuana was not easy. 

Medical marijuana helps improve Cole’s quality of life.  Without it his epilepsy was unbearable.  Bad days meant Cole could have as many as 20 seizures.

To treat her son, Lisa obtained the marijuana Cole needed from Holland. But now Cole has a prescription his mum can fill without traveling to the Netherlands. 

“Many parents are being forced to either take the only thing left on offer from NHS Scotland – which is brain surgery – or go against their clinicians to search for a safer solution alone. . .It is a step in the right direction and it means finally there will be a safe path for scared parents to take.”  – Lisa Quarrell

Medical marijuana is now available on NHS Scotland, the publicly funded healthcare system in Scotland. Besides easier access, having a clinic will cut costs for obtaining herbal cannabis medicine. Travel costs and illegal market prices drive the cost of marijuana up. Cannabis obtained through a clinic is cheaper.

A government approved clinic has access to large suppliers. Cannabis from these suppliers is more consistent and EU-GMP certified.

Parents of patients admit to spending upwards of 1.500€ a month for marijuana. The clinic will be private, making patients responsible for costs. But parents of patients will be getting a break of the 1.500€ some admit to spending without a clinic.

Proper medical marijuana treatment relies on consistency, quality, and affordability. These three characteristics are guaranteed when the supply is from a reliable source.

This clinic will give Scottish medical marijuana patients the treatment they need.

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