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BBC Scotland visit Sapphire Medical Clinics and Scotland’s first patients prescribed legal cannabis

Published: 10/06/2021

In March 2021, Sapphire Medical Clinics (“Sapphire Clinics”), a multi-award-winning medical cannabis clinic, announced it had received Scotland’s first Healthcare Improvement Scotland (“HIS”) registration to safely prescribe medical cannabis to patients across the country. Hundreds of Scottish patients have received prescriptions for medical cannabis since then having met with consultants at Sapphire Clinics via telemedicine. As COVID restrictions lift, patients have the option to have a face-to-face appointment in clinic, based in One Allan Park Wellbeing Clinic1, a multi-disciplinary clinic located in the heart of Scotland in the city of Stirling.

Suzie Marshall, 48, was the first patient to receive an appointment at Sapphire Medical Clinics in Scotland as she suffers from chronic pain resulting from rheumatoid arthritis. Read the full coverage by BBC’s Chris Clements here:

Dr Azfer Usmani is a Consultant Pain Specialist at Sapphire Clinics, he commented “For patients like Suzie, who’ve tried first line therapies with limited success, safe access to medical cannabis via Sapphire can be a lifeline. Having worked as a consultant pain specialist in Stirling for 4 years previously, I am pleased that Sapphire Medical Clinics is the first registered Healthcare Improvement Scotland medical cannabis clinic.”

Carl Holvey, Chief Pharmacist at Sapphire Clinics, added “There is good clinical evidence to show that medical cannabis can be effective for conditions such as chronic pain. All patients in Scotland who receive a prescription for medical cannabis are added to the Real-World Evidence platform established by Sapphire Clinics to ensure we grow this evidence base and continue to support increased access for patients.”


In February 2023, Sapphire Medical Clinics were informed that Health Improvement Scotland would no longer regulate virtual healthcare services who have their headquarters outside of Scotland. Sapphire Medical Clinics still retains an address at One Allan Park, Stirling and continues to be regulated by the Care Quality Commission.

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