Advertisement

  1. ITV Report

Billy Caldwell's mum demands meeting with MPs

Billy's mum has demanded a meeting with MPs to discuss 'life-saving' drug containing cannabis oil which is banned in the UK Credit: PA

The mother of Billy Caldwell, the Co Tyrone boy at the centre of a medicinal cannabis row, has called for a meeting with MPs to discuss her son’s future.

12-year-old Billy, who suffers from severe epileptic seizures, was rushed to a hospital in London on Friday after medicine containing cannabis oil that he had been using was confiscated from his mother when she tried to bring it into the UK from Canada.

On Saturday after a very public week-long struggle, Home Secretary Sajid Javid used "an exceptional power" to grant treatment for the young boy, using one of the bottles of cannabis oil confiscated by airport officials.

Charlotte Caldwell, from Castlederg, says the medicine won't last long. She said: "He has 20 days worth of anti-epileptic seizure drugs. What happens after that? Another battle?"

Ms Caldwell credits the oil with keeping her son’s seizures at bay, saying he was seizure-free for more than 300 days while using it, but it contains tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is restricted in the UK.

Billy began using the cannabis oil in 2016 to control his seizures. But his doctor was told by the Home Office to stop prescribing the medication.

Billy’s mother says she wants to discuss Billy’s future with MPs on Monday: "I want to meet the Home Secretary and Health Secretary (Jeremy Hunt), urgently, this week, to get assurance that not only will Billy's meds never again be removed, but to call for an urgent review of the overall policy on medical cannabis as it affects everyone who could benefit."

Ms Caldwell continued: "I'm asking Sajid now, I'm in London, I can assure him I'm not going anywhere, until this is now put in place and this medicine is made accessible to all the other children that desperately need it."