Cannabis for kids: Israel pioneers pediatric pot
Dina Gusovsky |
Source: Eshed family
Aviel Eshed, prior to his cancer diagnosis.
Sheba Medical Center is unique in that it’s a government-run hospital, where patients consume THC and Cannabidiol (CBD) oil as well as cannabis pills on-site.
Tikun Olam has about 4,000 patients, or about 30 percent of Israel’s medical marijuana recipients. The company has 60 employees including nurses, doctors, researchers and agronomists.
Most patients pay Tikun Olam $100 per month for medical cannabis, who also pay a one-time fee of $40 for a tutorial on how to properly use the cannabis. Those prices are determined by the Israeli Ministry of Health, which issues licenses for qualified patients to receive the marijuana. The $100 is a service fee, not dependent on how many grams of marijuana a patient receives.
For children with cancer, the cannabis is free. Though Tikun Olam has seen success in treating Arab and Jewish patients with marijuana in Israel, it has yet to find a partner to help it do the same in the Palestinian Authority.
The company is now appealing to Doctors without Borders and Physicians for Human Rights (PHR). Tikun Olam has high hopes for Zvi Bentwich, former chairman and current board member of PHR.