Associate Health Minister Peter Dunne has given permission for a teenager in an induced coma to be given medical marijuana.
Nineteen-year-old Alex Renton, from Nelson, is in Wellington Hospital suffering from refractory status epilepticus, which causes him to suffer from repeated seizures.pticus, which causes him to suffer from repeated seizures.
It is not known what is causing them but it is believed his body’s immune system is turning against itself.
Capital and Coast District Health Board applied to the Ministry of Health and Mr Dunne to use Elixinol, a cannabis-based product from the US which had been shown to relieve some forms of epilepsy.
Mr Dunne today said he was approving its use for Mr Renton on compassionate grounds.
“Despite the absence of clinical evidence supporting the efficacy of [the drug] in patients with Mr Renton’s condition, status epilepticus, my decision relies on the dire circumstances and extreme severity of Mr Renton’s individual case,” Mr Dunne said. . . .
Shouldn’t a decision on medicine be a medical one not a political one?