Much Hoole boy's six month lifeline for his vital cannabis medication from Europe
A vulnerable disabled boy who faced running out of vital cannabis based medication has been given a slight reprieve after the Dutch Government agreed to continued access for existing UK patients until July 1.
Ben Griffiths, 11, from Much Hoole, near Preston, was born with a form of cerebral palsy which can trigger multiple epileptic fits.
A Dutch cannabis medicine, costing £2,100 for a monthly private prescription, drastically reduced his fits from up to 300 a day to between none and five.
But in December officials said the arrangement for the medicine, sourced from the Transvaal Pharmacy in the Netherlands through a prescription by UK doctors, would be scrapped as UK prescriptions can no longer be fulfilled by EU pharmacies.
Morecambe mum spiked on night out in Lancaster brought back from dead 30 times
'Get on with it!': Hurry-up call for NHS bosses to deliver a new Royal Preston Hospital
Blackpool man loses an incredible 18st by eating Aldi's low calorie meals - and he now helps his 160,000 followers on TikTok
‘How a car crash saved my life’: Royal Preston patient recalls chance cancer diagnosis as hospital’s major trauma centre marks tenth anniversary
Kiena Dawes: woman who died after being hit by train in Garstang named as 23-year-old mum of one
Ben’s mum, Joanne Griffiths, said: “Sadly we are already taking a product that can’t be changed as it could cause seizures or not work at all.”
The family faced a desperate situation, but on Friday, the Right Hon Minister for Prevention, Public Health and Primary Care issued a letter confirming access to the medicines for at least six months.
Katherine Fletcher, MP for South Ribble said: “ This is a hugely important issue for Joanne and Ben and for other families locally and across the UK.
"I’ve been working behind the scenes, speaking privately to Ministers on Ben and Joanne’s behalf and I am absolutely delighted that the pressure I and other colleagues have brought
privately to bear has resulted in the fantastic news that the Dutch Government has agreed to the continued access to these medicines for existing UK patients until 1 July 2021.
"This news will I hope bring enormous relief to Joanne and to Ben and I am hugely grateful to my colleagues in the Department of Health and Social Care and to the Dutch Government
for working together so closely and quickly on this”.
The Department is communicating with clinicians and the supply chain to ensure immediate action to resume supply so no patient faces a break in treatment.
The Lancashire Post is more reliant than ever on you taking out a digital subscription to support our journalism. For unlimited access to Lancashire news and information online, you can subscribe here.