Govt yet to approve ganja use for lawyer’s cancer-stricken wife
Attorney-at-law Douglas Trotman today said he was willing to give the Ministry of Health a little longer to get back to him on a request for his sick wife to use marijuana to ease her pain.
Trotman’s wife has been diagnosed with cancer, and he first announced in May at a panel discussion on medical marijuana organized by the University of the West Indies that he had been awaiting word from the ministry on an application for her to use the drug, based on a prescription obtained from a doctor in Canada.
Following yesterday’s announcement that Government was conducting research into the possible use of ganja as a medicinal drug for cancer and chronic non-communicable diseases, the attorney-at-law said he was hopeful that he would receive a positive response but he was willing to wait.
“There is evidence for [its] use and it is good to see the Government moving . . . spurred on of course, by the application that is currently before it. There are additional steps we are taking; I can’t reveal those right now, but we are giving the ministry lots of time. We will be a little more patient,” Trotman told Barbados TODAY this evening.
“Remember though that cancer is a terminal disease and the discomfort associated with it . . . the pain, lymphedema, other effects cannot be done with more radiation, the anxiety, restlessness . . . the marijuana can assist with all these issues,” he said.
Trotman said his wife was holding on, but the disease had taken a toll on her body, forcing her to give up her job.
The lawyer explained that he had applied for the licence to for his wife to use the drug following two surgeries related to her progressive cancer because existing legislation allows the Minister of Health to permit ganja use for medicinal purposes.
And while he indicated that he had received a response, he did not reveal the contents of that reply, although it was clear permission had not been granted.
“The application we made was for marijuana to be used for palliative care. The stage we are at now is the ministry responded to us and in turn we sent them a further letter along with the law so they would be aware the minister does have the authority to address a licence under Regulation 4 of the Abuse, Prevention and Control Act.
“So the laws are there for marijuana to be used for medical purposes, even though persons have been saying otherwise,” Trotman told Barbados TODAY this evening.
He said he was pleased that the ministry had taken up the challenge and that the palliative care organization and Senior Medical Officer Dr Kenneth George had recognized the projections for marijuana use for chronic non-communicable diseases.