Cannabis patients on hunger strike!

Press release: Appeal in Cannabis Verdict of Cologne – Cannabis clients on hunger strike

22nd of July, the Cologne Administrative Court had decided that home growing of cannabis is principly still illegal, but may be permitted as a ‘stopgate’ under certain conditions for medical use, if the patients are not able to pay the exorbitant prices in pharmacy.
The Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Products (Bundesinstitut für Arzneimittel und Medizinprodukte) now appealed against that judgemanet. For this reason home growing of cannabis in Germany stays illegal also for medical reasons.
In protest against this appeal, six chronically ill patients from different parts of the country went into hunger strike. They demand a fast solution for the question if and under which conditions patients are allowed grow medical cannabis at home.

‘Anybody experiencing pain needs his medicaments now and is not able to wait’, said patient Ute Köhler, who started her hunger strike today. She wants to call attention to her and other patients situation of emergency. The 60 years old woman is suffering severe chronic pain from radiotherapy. Only the active ingredient of cannabis ‘Dronabinol’ alleviates her pain. ‘Without the treatment of THC, I am not able to sleep, eat and speak.’ The costs of this treatment are up to 900€ per month which are not covered by health insurance.

The verdict of Cologne was an enormous step forward for affected patients, underlines Franjo Grotenhermen, doctor and chairman of ‘Working Group Cannabis as Medicine’ (Arbeitsgemeinschaft Cannabis als Medizin).
‘Because of this appeal, affordable treatment with cannabis-based medicin will be unnecessarily delayed’, he criticises the Federal Government. ‘Severely ill patients can not be expected to fight for their rights over years’. On July 22nd the Administrative Court of Cologne had accepted a complaint of three men, who filed a suit against prohibition of home growing, because they cannot afford Cannabis or Cannabis based medicine from pharmacy.

Big Hope is being placed in an online petition: Grotenhermen and others advocate that the Federal Governement takes measures regarding the costs for cannabis-based medications. The Bundestag should also decide that any penal proceedings against patients, using cannabis-based medication on prescription, are to be dropped.

The Petition is still running until 10th of September and we need 50.000 signs.


For an instruction in english please click here

For inquiries please contact:

Dr. med. Franjo Grotenhermen
Arbeitsgemeinschaft Cannabis als Medizin e.V.
Telefon: 02952-9708572

V.i.S.d.P.: F. Grotenhermen, Am Mildenweg 6, 59602 Rüthen


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