News

Dundonald toddler receives first private prescription for medicinal cannabis to treat epilepsy

Toddler Jorja Emerson can suffer up to 30 seizures a day

A CO DOWN toddler with severe epilepsy is believed to have become the first child in the UK to be prescribed medical cannabis since a change in the law last month.

Two-year-old Jorja Emerson from Dundonald suffers up to 30 seizures a day and her family say the treatment is "the difference between her living and dying".

Her father, Robin, confirmed she was prescribed the medication at a private hospital in London yesterday. It will cost around £1,000 a month.

The development comes five months after a landmark ruling led to a seven-year-old Co Down girl being granted the first long-term licence for the use of medicinal cannabis in the UK.

Sophia Gibson, from Newtownards, who also suffers from a rare form of epilepsy, was granted the licence by an expert panel set up by the British government following a three-year battle by her parents.

Co Tyrone schoolboy Billy Caldwell (12) has also been granted a similar licence to treat his epilepsy.

Following a change in the law on November 1, the drug was rescheduled which meant that medicinal cannabis oil can be prescribed - but only where other treatment options have been exhausted.

Mr Emerson said this made obtaining a prescription difficult.

"I was fearing that this day would never come," he said.

"I hope this day paves the way for many other clinicians to have the confidence to prescribe."

Enjoy reading the Irish News?

Subscribe from just £1 for the first month to get full access

Categories

News

Today's horoscope

Horoscope


See a different horoscope: