Blowing Smoke

When Victoria’s Tim Wilkins realized his Health Canada licence to possess medical cannabis was set to expire last year, he diligently filled out the eight-page renewal form, paid $65 to obtain his physician’s signature and submitted the package to Health Canada’s Marihuana Medical Access Division in Ottawa on August 22—13 weeks before it was due.

“I’d dealt with [MMAD] for a few years, so I knew how long it could take,” says Wilkins, who declined to let Monday publish his real last name, fearing the stigma still attached to medical cannabis use.

On November 27 Wilkins’ new license arrived—five weeks after the promised eight-week processing period had passed—and three days after the old one had already expired.

“The system is set up to be as frustrating and confusing as possible and is really just a joke,” says Wilkins. “I had never believed it possible that an arm of government could be so ass backwards, so inept, so slow and so frustrating.”

The 35-year-old suffers from degenerative hereditary motor and sensory neuropathy, a muscle-wasting disease that leaves Wilkins, a former seismic exploration worker in the oil and gas industry, with “constant and chronic pain.” Before a colleague suggested he try marijuana to relieve his discomfort in 1999, Wilkins says he had never experimented with any of the illicit products on Canada’s list of controlled substances.

“I am, and have always been, a law-abiding citizen,” says Wilkins. “But it was immediately obvious what [medical cannabis] was doing for me.”

Smoking marijuana, he says, provides a degree of relief from his daily pain without the harsh side effects associated with many laboratory-produced prescription pharmaceuticals.

Today Wilkins’ is one of a growing chorus of voices—many emanating from the progressively, critically and terminally ill—outraged by the bureaucratic tap dance required to win crucial government support to use the herb that can serve as muscle relaxant, pain reliever, anti-depressant and appetite stimulant for a variety of medical conditions.

More on this and why people are so pissed at the Govt and the 1500% mark up on Medical Marijuana that is leaving sick people with mounting debts from bcnewsgroup.com  HERE

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