Sapphire Medical Clinics has been given the green light from Healthcare Improvement Scotland (HIS) to open the nation’s first cannabis clinic. The clinic’s aim is to provide access to cannabis for Scottish patients who suffer from a range of conditions from back pain to anxiety.
The UK government changed the law in November 2018 after a review that concluded that evidence showed cannabis had therapeutic benefits in certain cases. Medicinal cannabis clinics have been operating in England since 2019 when the Care Quality Commission approved Sapphire to operate their first clinic in Manchester, with clinics in London and Bristol following shortly.
Sapphire’s website states; “Formed by doctors for the mutual benefit of patients and doctors. Our aim is to enable access to medicinal cannabis for patients who will derive clinical benefit through consultation with expert doctors working within a framework approved by all relevant regulatory authorities. Sapphire Medical Clinics were formed by doctors for doctors. We aim to become a trusted partner of NHS medical professionals and support patients in using medicinal cannabis where appropriate.”
The opening of Sapphire’s new clinic in Stirling will be its fourth clinic in the UK offering both face to face and online appointments to patients. Sapphire is a private medical facility where patients will be expected to pay to receive treatment. However, the Sapphire Access Scheme offers affordable treatment options to patients who may have a barrier to pay in full and are enrolled on the UK Medical Cannabis Registry.
Dr Mikael Sodergren, managing director of Sapphire Medical commented, “We are delighted to be the first clinic to be registered with HIS, which is testament to the robust clinical governance framework we have established for evaluating patients for medical cannabis.’
‘By capturing clinical outcomes through the UK Medical Cannabis Registry, we will significantly contribute to the evidence base and ultimately allow more patients to benefit from medicinal cannabis as a treatment option.’