as go to index


Cannabis was condemned by the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs (1961SC) as a psychoactive drug with “particularly dangerous properties” and no known therapeutic value. In the past decades however, there has been increasing interest in the therapeutic potential of cannabis and single cannabinoids. These chemical compounds are found in plants, the phytocannabinoids, but also in the human body, the endocannabinoids. Here they act upon cannabinoid receptors and form the endocannabinoid system (ECS) that regulates physiological processes such as appetite, while altering mood, memory, and brain reward systems. They help create “homeostasis”, 
a self-regulating process by which a living organism can maintain internal stability while adjusting to changing external conditions. Unfortunately, sometimes the body lacks the normal functioning of endocannabinoids. When this happens, it may be desirable to get cannabinoids from an external source, the phytocannabinoids found in the Cannabis Sativa plant, These can help re-balance the ECS and maintain the homeostasis. Results of an increasing number of scientific studies have led to the approval of cannabis-based medicines as well as in some places, cannabis flowers. It appears the assumptions of the 1961SC were proven to be unfounded and misleading.

 These results have been achieved in large part thanks to the tireless efforts of a group of scientists nowadays gathered around the German Dr. Franjo Grotenhermen, founder and executive director of the International Alliance for Cannabinoid Medicines . Their scientific contribution to the rehabilitation of cannabis and the cannabinoids as an extremely important group of medicines from our pharmacopoeia now allow to throw the ban on cannabis research as a historical blunder based on ideology and morality, into the trashcan. We’re momentarily still left with the dire consequences of the 1961SC’s false premises, which obliges science to a great catch-up race to remove the artificial stigma surrounding cannabis as well as the” cannabis dilemma” which holds that even though positive scientific data are scarce, many patients and doctors worldwide use cannabis-based medicines with astonishing results. Dilemma, because often illegal.

 Science and politics now have to decide what to choose. President Zelensky has made his choice as he told his people in an address to the Verkhovna Rada, the Ukrainian parliament, on Wednesday July 28th, that "all the world's best practices, all the most effective policies, all the solutions, no matter how difficult or unusual they may seem to us, must be applied in Ukraine so that Ukrainians, all our citizens, do not have to endure the pain, stress and trauma of war". The Ukrainian president herewith embraced the ‘Grotenhermen doctrine' that holds that policymakers have to try to find pragmatic ways to deal with this dilemmatic situation by both being rational and compassionate with their citizens and open possibilities to get relief from their suffering by the use of cannabis-based medicines.

 At the request of the Patients of Ukraine Dr.  Grotenhermen has been so kind to prepare for the information of the honorable deputies of the Verkhona Rada, two comprehensive overviews on cannabis and cannabinoids, and cannabis and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) respectively. These two documents address the great needs of the Ukrainian society and should allow the Ukrainian legislative to follow their president and make the right choice for their people. Equally listed underneath is dr. Grotenhermen’s co-authored  May 2020 “Open Letter to the United Nations: Ensuring Continued Medical Cannabis Access during the Covid-19 Pandemic”. By replacing the latter term by “the Russian war in Ukraine”, this letter delivers a model for medical cannabis management in times of war.

 The Patients of Ukraine Foundation and the Drugs Peace Institute convey to the Verkhovna Rada deputies the message that now, the choice is up to you.


Letter from the DPI to dr. Franjo Grotenhermen

Letter from the IACM on Cannabis and Cannabinoids

Letter from the IACM on Cannabis and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Open Letter to the UN on medical cannabis access during COVID-19 

Letter for dr. Franjo Grotenhermen from Patients of Ukraine 

Letter from dr. Grotenhermen to the Verkhovna Rada

Letter from the IACM Patient Council to the Verkhovna Rada



back to top of page