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Billy Caldwell decision heartless and cruel – Begley

21 May, 2018 - by Órfhlaith Begley

Sinn Féin West Tyrone MP Órfhlaith Begley is vigorously challenging the decision to cease the prescription of medicinal cannabis in the case of Billy Caldwell.

Órfhlaith Begley said:

“I have written to British Secretary of State for Health and Social Care Jeremy Hunt, on four separate occasions, requesting an urgent meeting, alongside Billy’s mother Charlotte Caldwell, to discuss Billy’s case.

“It was our hope that this meeting would explore the best means of ensuring Billy’s medical prescription for both himself and for other cases where it is medically recommended. My office is yet to receive a reply or acknowledgment from Minister Hunt’s Department.

“My office have today issued another request for a meeting.

"I have also written to the British Home Office requesting an explanation as to why they ordered the cessation of prescriptions for Billy’s medical cannabis.

"I also sought an explanation as why this decision has then been taken now. Billy had been receiving this prescription since April 2017. It is my understanding that the Home Office and Health Officials made no objections before now despite being aware that Billy was receiving this medication.

“I have written to the Department of Health Permanent Secretary Richard Pengelly to clarify the role of his officials in this decision.

“Sinn Féin's support for medicinal cannabis will always be based on clinical evidence.

"We support the use of medicinal cannabis by patients where it is medically recommended.

“This is a heartless and cruel decision. 

“Sinn Féin has always been supportive of Charlotte Caldwell in her selfless unstinting campaign to get life-changing support for her son Billy and others. We will continue to provide whatever support  we can in challenging this cruel decision.”

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