A massive project that will test the effectiveness of cannabis is scheduled to take place in Great Britain over the next two years. Known as Project TWENTY21 and overseen by the group Drug Science, the study will involve a large number of patients who will be given the drug by the end of 2021.
Endorsed by the Royal College of Psychiatrists (RCP), the project has the ultimate goal of convincing British political leaders to expand the use of cannabis in the treatment of selected health problems. Although medical cannabis is currently legal in the United Kingdom, the supporters of Project TWENTY21 are dedicated to making the drug as widely available as other medications. Under the current system, British doctors may be reluctant to prescribe medical cannabis due to concerns about its safety and efficiency. Additionally, concern has been expressed by some observers that the drug has been overused. Under the proposed plan, up to 20,000 patients with certain ailments will receive subsidised cannabis.
The TWENTY21 project will specifically study the effects of cannabis on the selected patients. Those targeted in the study include the victims of chronic pain, multiple sclerosis and post-traumatic stress disorder. According to one RCP representative, the study should enhance the understanding of cannabis use in the health care industry and in the treatment of mental health issues. The use of cannabis has also been proposed to treat the abusers of illegal drugs and to deal with threats from those incarcerated in prison.
A representative of the British Pain Society noted that studies in other countries have shown the benefit of cannabis in the treatment of pain. This is significant when considering that nearly 30 million inhabitants of Great Britain suffer from pain, with approximately one-quarter of the sufferers lacking access to cannabis.
Cannabis was used for medical reasons in Great Britain for more than a century until it was declared illegal about 50 years ago. This change made lawbreakers out of thousands of patients who used it to treat their ailments. Despite the change in the law in 2018, medical cannabis prescriptions are still relatively rare among those who use the British
National Health Service. Project TWENTY21 will use data from different sources in hopes of giving medical patients receive the help that they need.
Drug Science is an independent charity that was established in 2010. It is dedicated to bringing together experts from different backgrounds for determining the positive and negative aspects of certain drugs. The group has been recognised throughout the world for its efforts in this area.