Have your say on new rules for medicinal cannabis
Hon Dr David Clark
Minister of Health
10 July 2019 PĀNUI PĀPĀHO
More widespread access to medicinal cannabis products is a step closer today with the release of proposals for regulations says Minister of Health Dr David Clark.
The Ministry of Health has published the proposed regulations and standards for medicinal cannabis, covering everything from cultivation to quality standards. Public consultation is open for four weeks.
“Making medicinal cannabis more readily available has the potential to help ease the suffering of thousands of people who are living in pain, so it’s important we get these regulations right,” Dr Clark says.
“The legislation Parliament passed in December paved the way for greater access to medicinal cannabis products and ultimately will allow New Zealand companies to manufacture quality medicinal cannabis products for local and international markets.
“This is another example of the progress the Coalition Government is making on enhancing the wellbeing of New Zealanders, while also boosting business opportunities.
“We’re now looking for feedback on whether the proposals in the consultation document meet our overall goal of improving patient access to quality medicinal cannabis products.
“We are also looking for views on how these products are prescribed, the quality standards for medicinal cannabis products, licensing for cultivators and manufacturers, barriers to patients accessing these medicines and several other proposals.
“I encourage the health sector, industry and the public to engage so the final regulations can be shaped by a wide range of perspectives,” says Dr Clark.
The regulations supporting the Medicinal Cannabis Scheme will be finalised by 18 December 2019 and the Ministry of Health anticipate having the Medicinal Cannabis Scheme operational in the first quarter of 2020.
The consultation proposal was informed by feedback from a medical cannabis advisory group that includes medical professionals and consumer and industry representatives. This group will continue to provide feedback as the medicinal cannabis scheme is developed.
The consultation runs until Wednesday 7 August. More information can be found on the Ministry of Health website [https://www.health.govt.nz/publication/medicinal-cannabis-scheme-consultation].
NOTE: The proposals for regulations only cover medicinal cannabis products. These medicines are only available on prescription. Recreational cannabis is not part of the scheme. New Zealanders will choose whether or not to legalise or regulate recreational cannabis as part of a referendum at the 2020 General Election.