MP battles for epileptic child from Dover to receive NHS cannabis treatment

Contributed by editor on Feb 14, 2020 - 08:30 AM

Natalie Elphicke MP with Emma Appleby


A mother from Aylesham in Dover district is paying £2,500 a month for medicinal cannabis for her daughter because she can’t get an NHS prescription – more than a year after it was made legal.


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Dover & Deal MP Natalie Elphicke has called on the Health Secretary to step in to help Teagan Appleby, who has one of the worst cases of child epilepsy in the country, suffering up to 300 seizures a day.

In October 2018, the Government announced cannabis can be legally prescribed by specialist doctors, recognising that it can be effective for severe child epilepsy cases like Teagan’s.

But 16 months on, Teagan’s mother Emma has been unable to get NHS funding or an NHS prescription and is still having to meet the cost of private prescriptions for it.

Natalie met Emma in Parliament last week – and has now written to the Health Secretary calling for a review of the situation.

She said: “Teagan’s Mum Emma is a tireless campaigner and has made sure this issue has received the attention it deserves.

“Changes to the law were made specifically to help sufferers like Teagan. Yet health chiefs are still blocking access to this vital treatment that makes a such a difference to Teagan’s quality of life.

“I have written to the Secretary of State and the local Clinical Commissioning Group setting out these points.

“Nationally the law was changed because the Government recognised this was a vital treatment for cases like Teagan’s. It is disappointing to hear that local health chiefs and consultants are blocking access to this medicine when it has been prescribed on the NHS elsewhere in the country since the law was changed.

“I hope this matter is resolved as soon as possible and that Teagan gets the medicine that works for her.”

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