An hour-long programme will be aired on Channel 4 on Monday 28 January, following the story of a family trying to access medical cannabis.
Almost 9 in 10 Health Boards and Trusts in England and Wales do not enable mental health provision within epilepsy clinics. This is despite research showing that children with epilepsy are four times more likely to experience a mental health problem than their peers.
Epilepsy organisation Epilepsy Action has said it is disappointed with the lack of priority given to epilepsy in the NHS Long Term Plan.
The Long Term Plan was published on 7 January, detailing how the NHS intends to move healthcare forward over the next 10 years.
In a post, Epilepsy Action highlighted that while epilepsy is mentioned in the plan, it is not made a priority.
The government has said epilepsy medicines will not be included in plans to allow pharmacists to ration medicines in the case of a no-deal Brexit, the Sunday Times has reported.
In December, the government set out plans to avoid shortages of medicines, which it called a “serious shortage protocol”. This would be in the event that no Brexit deal is made and the UK leaves the EU without one.
NHS England has agreed to make available a treatment for hard-to-treat focal onset seizures caused by the condition tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC). This has come after the organisation initially decided not to commission the medicine – everolimus – in June 2018.
The epilepsy medicine Briviact (brivaracetam) will now be available within NHS Scotland and NHS Wales for children over 4 years old for focal-onset seizures. This will be used as an add-on medicine taken alongside the person’s other medicines.
Brivaracetam is already available for use in children 4 years and older across Europe, authorised by the European Medicines Agency in July 2018.
This week, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) is running a campaign to raise awareness of reporting medicine side-effects.
A new study from the Netherlands has looked at the effectiveness of a new sleep seizure detection device. The device – Nightwatch – is a bracelet worn on the arm. It uses heart rate and movement to sense what the authors called ‘major’ seizures.
From today, specialist clinicians can prescribe cannabis-based medicines in the UK to patients with “exceptional clinical need”. They will no longer need to apply to an expert panel for a licence.
The UK government has rescheduled cannabis-based medicines under the Misuse of Drugs regulations 2001. They are now no longer listed under Schedule 1 alongside substances considered to have no therapeutic effect.