The mother of a six-year-old Auckland boy suffering from life-threatening seizures is pleading to the Health Minister to intervene because health officials have been seizing and destroying his CBD oil.
Eddy’s mum Katy Thomas told 1 NEWS her son has a range of complex health needs, including epilepsy but despite that, he can’t get his medicine.
“He has not been doing that great simply because we had his CBD medication stopped at the border, not just once but, twice in the last month,” she said.
“One day without his CBD and the seizures come back.”
On one occasion, the UK exporter forgot to include the prescription, but the other saw Medsafe destroy Eddy's medicine because the CBD level was a fraction too high.
“By this point, Eddy's having seizures every hour throughout the night,” Thomas said.
“None of us are sleeping and he's covered in bruises from head to toe because he's falling out of bed and he's banging his head.
“The next day he's still dottery on his feet, he hasn't been to school in two weeks.”
Two-and-half years ago, the Government passed a new law with the intention to make medicinal cannabis more widely available to help ease people's suffering, but industry insiders like Medleaf CEO Courtney Letica say that's not happening.
“We've now got standards that are the toughest in the world,” Letica said.
“Ninety-nine per cent of companies globally don't produce to these standards. People are forced to the black market and that, personally, is not a safety-based approach at all.”
In the meantime, Eddy’s mum has a simple plea to Health Minister Andrew Little.
“We're still struggling, we're really struggling, we need his help.”
Little told 1 NEWS he is yet to be briefed on Eddy's case but expects Medsafe to follow the Government's rules. Medsafe say they have been following Government guidelines.