In 2020, a 15-year-old boy, Billy Caldwell, who was suffering 500 life-threatening seizures a month was cured, by cannabis. KossyDerrickBlog KossyDerrickEnt


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Sunday, February 12, 2023

In 2020, a 15-year-old boy, Billy Caldwell, who was suffering 500 life-threatening seizures a month was cured, by cannabis.

In 2020, a 15-year-old boy who was suffering 500 life-threatening seizures a month was cured, by cannabis. Billy Caldwell was the first person to be prescribed a lifelong prescription of cannabis under the NHS.

His mother, Charlotte Caldwell, said: “Finally I’m hearing signs that the Home Office appreciate the severity of Billy’s condition, and are showing a willingness to act humanely.”

In a statement, a Home Office spokesperson said: “Billy is in the care of medical professionals who are best placed to assess the care and treatment that he requires.

“The Home Office is contacting Billy’s medical team. If the team treating Billy advise a particular course of urgent action, the Home Office will carefully consider what options are available to help facilitate that advice.”

On Friday afternoon, Billy was taken to Chelsea and Westminster hospital in west London in an ambulance after experiencing uncontrollable seizures.

The Home Office has said it will “carefully consider” allowing a 12-year-old boy to be prescribed cannabis oil after he was admitted to hospital with “life-threatening” seizures following the confiscation of his supply.

Billy Caldwell had his anti-epileptic medicine confiscated at Heathrow airport on Monday. If the decision is made to permit him to have the treatment, it would be the first time that cannabis oil containing THC was legally prescribed in the UK since it was made illegal in 1971.

Late on Friday night, Billy’s family were trying to find a clinician with knowledge of his condition to recommend the prescription of cannabis medicine.

“Billy has had back-to-back seizures today,” his mother said. “On his medication, which included the vital but banned THC component, he was seizure-free for more than 300 days.”

Caldwell said doctors in Canada and Northern Ireland familiar with the case had described her son’s situation as life-threatening. She said the Home Office would be held accountable if her son died.

Billy had been placed on cannabidiol (CBD) oil, along with opiate-based medication, after he was forced to stop taking cannabis oil, but he failed to respond positively to the treatment and his health deteriorated as his seizures gradually resumed.

The family said the 12-year-old can now be treated only with hospital-administered medication.

In 2020, a Care Quality Commission report found that 259 cannabis-based medical products (CBMPs) had been prescribed privately in the UK in 2019, and only 18 CBMPs had been prescribed through the NHS. Although not a direct comparison, in contrast California had nearly one million medical cannabis patients in 2018.

In the UK, cannabis is illegal for recreational use. Medical use of cannabis is legal when prescribed by a registered specialist doctor. However, due to significant lack of research and clinical trials, finding an NHS doctor willing to prescribe medical cannabis is incredibly difficult.

Caldwell and her team from the I Am Billy Foundation will meet with a junior minister in the UK Department of Health and other health officials this week to make their case.

“This is about pioneering for the patients. We can do this, in a way whereby it will get comfortable with the government because it’s the only way this is going to go. We have got to start gathering the evidence. The efficacy and the safety of the medicine is paramount,” Caldwell told VICE World News.

But Billy was only four months old when Charlotte noticed something unusual about his behaviour. “I looked into his crib, and he was just lying very still with his eyes wide open, staring at the ceiling. He wasn't crying, but I thought it was a really strange expression.” She picked him up, rubbed his back and placed him back in the crib. Again, Billy began to stare with that same, blank expression.

Doctors advised that he be sent to a specialist in the county’s main hospital. During the ambulance ride, Billy experienced his first grand mal seizure or tonic-clonic seizure. 

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