Speaker by Various Artists

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Tadhg Stopford: Why I'm standing for the ADHB

by Tadhg Stopford

Hi there, just call me Tim.

We face tough problems, and I’d like to help, because there are solutions.

An Auckand District Health Board member has nominated me for as a candidate for the ADHB, because her MS-related pain and fatigue is reduced with hemp products from Rotorua.  Nothing else helped her. 

If I can get on to ADHB, my goal is to drive changes in our public health approach that will rapidly improve public health and reduce our health spend.

My family have chronic health issues that are not served by the current model. Your family probably will too at some point. We are all getting older.

But our public health system is collapsing under the weight of obesity, diabetes, cancer, and age-related illnesses (dementia, arthritis, etc). That's why our DHBs are half a billion in the red, and bleeding cash.

Ironically, that cash burn isn’t even fixing those chronic conditions, just spending money.

So, we need to change the model, quickly, if we are to prosper.

Evidence shows a homegrown healthcare solution can reduce many of those problems.

I’m a concerned father of two, a history teacher, and, with Dr Ben Jansen and Dr Graham Gulbransen, wrote NZs first recognised Hemp medicine/Medical cannabis course for GPs in 2017. 

Most people don’t realise that Industrial Hemp is a unique functional food, and that ‘medical cannabis’ is a bit of a swindle really. We can hugely improve our health system and economy if we use hemp properly as a food and dietary supplement; not just as a medicine.

Although a licensed crop for over a decade, with all plants and farmers licensed by the Director General of Health; anti-competitive practices by presumably captured regulators, mean we are not being allowed to use hemp properly.

This is terrible for our people, and local economy. We are passing up the triple win of improved health outcomes, reduced spending, and developing local industry.

We can. We can protect our families and friends better, cheaper; with industrial hemp.

That’s why Italians are paying for hemp flowers instead of taking publicly-funded medicines. Because hemp flower is legal there, and its proving helpful without harm. Not only that, but public access to hemp flower hits organised crime revenues, and crime itself.

The Hemp Foundation has taught hemp medicine to six hundred and fifty medical professionals since 2017, and they support our plan to reduce health costs and improve health outcomes with hemp flower/food/medicine.

We have supportive senior doctors and agencies, and are actively working to educate and collect evidence that speeds progress in this exciting field. We have three RCTs (randomised controlled trials) in various stages, including one at DHB level.

Let’s reduce our health burden, and improve the health and wealth of all kiwis.  It starts with education. Let’s face our future together, and improve our foundations.

For more information:  www.thehempfoundation.org.nz

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