Pubdate: Fri, 03 Jun 2011
Source: Copenhagen Post, The (Denmark)
Copyright: 2011 The Copenhagen Post


Sclerosis Patients to Get Legal Access to Drug Containing Cannabis

The minister for internal affairs and health, Bertel Haarder, has
ordered a law change that will legalise the prescription and sale of a
prescription drug with marijuana as its active ingredient.

The law change will allow doctors to prescribe the drug Sativex, which
has the same chemical compounds found in marijuana, to patients with
multiple sclerosis, reports Berlingske newspaper.

"I understand from the Danish Medicines Agency that Sativex can help
patients with multiple sclerosis, who have not responded to other
sclerosis drugs. So, we're not going to let stiff bureaucratic rules
stand in the way of those patients getting a treatment that can help
them," Haarder said.

The rule change goes into effect on June 3, and makes it possible for
the Danish Medicines Agency to allow doctors to prescribe Sativex to
sclerosis patients. Only neurologists and doctors specialising in
neuromedicine will be authorised to write the prescriptions.

Sativex is an oral spray that is chemically identical to marijuana in
liquid form. It was developed by the UK-based company GW
Pharmaceuticals to alleviate pain, spasms, over-active bladder and
other symptoms associated with multiple sclerosis.

Sativex has been approved in the UK and Canada, and is exported to
some 28 countries worldwide, mostly as unlicensed prescriptions. It
has also been approved for late stage trials in the US.
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MAP posted-by: Richard R Smith Jr.