France: Cannabis experiment postponed?


Initially planned for September 2019 then in January 2020, the experimentation of therapeutic cannabis in France will be postponed

Coronavirus, that is the excuse put forward by the National Assembly during the discussions concerning the social security budget, A change has been submitted in article 1 of the bill and provides for the postponement of certain experiments in order to deal with the consequences of the current crisis. Despite a request for amendment passed by the wayside, led by the deputy Mrs. Fontaine-Domeizel and her team, the experimentation of cannabis will undoubtedly be delayed.

Conducted by a Temporary Scientific Committee (CST), created by the National Agency for the Safety of Medicines and Health Products (ANSM), this experiment includes 3000 patients and for a period of two years. It aims in particular to assess the feasibility of a supply circuit (prescription, dispensing, training, supply) of cannabis for medical use in France, for listed pathologies. As a reminder, this experiment will not concern the 200000 patients wishing to be treated with therapeutic cannabis for other pathologies (not listed).

Theoretically, this should take 24 months to divide into 4 stages: six months for implementation, six months for patient integration, six months for follow-up and six months for data analysis. At the end of these two years, a scientific committee will meet to write a final report on the effects of medical cannabis.

However, the purpose of this amendment is to exclude the current experiment from the field and has been declared inadmissible after its publication in application of article 98 of the regulations of the National Assembly.

This experiment, introduced thanks to a transpartisan amendment by the General Rapporteur during the examination of the social security financing bill for 2020, had gained consensus during the vote in the National Assembly.

It must remain a priority in order to provide a rapid response to the suffering of thousands of patients, who find themselves in a dead end and facing many risks on the penal as well as the health level.

This situation poses many problems to the patients, always more numerous, besides the fact of still not having access to drugs like epidiolex, sativex, the wait becomes unbearable for many and their only option is self-medication, with the benevolent eye of certain practitioners and above all, when possible.

In addition there are too many gray areas, funding, training of prescribing doctors, production area, to hope that the date of September 2020 is realistic.

While waiting for better days the situation of French patients is deteriorating, they cannot wait any longer and that sums it up thus: suffering for some, illegality for others. How long will France have to wait to resolve this situation when many other European countries have crossed the threshold.

Isn't it time to stop the lawsuits for the sick? Let us hope that this last question can find an attentive ear on the part of the decision-makers because that will undoubtedly allow the patients to wait more serenely for the opening of this experiment.

Written by an impatient patient

Tags : FranceLawProhibitionTherapeutic