Currently in Denmark, those found using or selling cannabis typically face a healthy amount of prison time. The Danish government has never been very open to medical cannabis either, as history shows us. Those suffering from painful conditions have not been able to legally treat themselves, forcing patients to break the law to simply find relief. Fortunately, a new trial has recently been approved for the medical use of cannabis in Denmark.
As of January 1, 2018, doctors in Denmark will be able to prescribe medical cannabis to patients that are eligible. Those suffering from multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injuries, chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting, and chronic pain will get to participate in the 4-year trial. After a poll showing that 88% of Danes supported legalizing medical cannabis, this trial came as no surprise.
The decision was criticized by Andreas Rudkjobing, the chairman of the Danish Medical Association. He claimed there was "not enough documentation of what happens with patients who use this for a long time." The Social Democrats, the anti-immigration Danish People's Party and the ruling Venstre party (three biggest parties) are against legalization of recreational use, despite polls showing that 72% of citizens are in favor of the government overseeing the sale of the cannabis.
There are an expected number of 1,500 patients to participate in this trial by 2021, and many are excited to finally receive legal treatment without fear of severe consequences. The Health Ministry said that the four-year trial “will be evaluated so that parliament can decide if it should be made permanent." Most are hopeful for a positive outcome from the trial, revealing that Danes are better off with the ability to self-medicate legally. It's likely that if Denmark sees any type of progress, other areas will seek to reconsider cannabis laws.