Medical marijuana in Spain will soon be regulated and available in pharmacies and health centers as a free therapy: the canary

The use of cannabis for health care is now closer than ever, as the Health Ministry has promised to accept Parliament’s conclusions. The Health Commission and Congress Plenary Session are expected to discuss the report next week, and then the Spanish Medicines and Health Products Agency (Aemps) will have six months to finally regulate its use.

Dozens of experts took part in the sub-commission that wanted to create a basis for the use of cannabis in medical treatments, with negotiations going on until the last moment, the ruling PSOE party agreed with some of the points put forward by its coalition partners Podemos. The main aim was to make it clear that cancer patients in particular can receive this treatment.

According to the text, patients suffering from multiple sclerosis, some forms of epilepsy, nausea and vomiting secondary to chemotherapy, endometriosis, cancer pain and chronic non-cancer pain (including neuropathic pain) will soon be able to legally use extracts or standardized preparations of cannabis (oils, inhaled or pharmacological), which will also be available for other therapeutic indications if supported by medical studies.

Marijuana almost ready to harvest

THE KEY: Medicinal uses. “This treatment is not a miracle, but it will improve the quality of life of 200,000 patients,” said one expert

The document emphasizes that these masterful cannabis formulas can only be prescribed by physicians (although it is not limited to physicians working in the public health system, as the original text states) and recommends that these prescriptions be made by the “health system network”. become pharmacies”, ie those in hospitals and health centres, although it opens the door for ready-made “community” pharmacies (those on the street) to also be able to sell it, a change brought to the table by Podemos. In addition, cannabis treatments must have a defined duration and a registry of patients using this therapy will be established.

The parties have also included the use of flowering tops (cannabis flowers) to develop medical trial projects, a request from patients since this way of using cannabis through inhalation offers faster effects for users than simply eating or drinking infusions.

However, the text makes clear limitations: Cannabis may only be used for health purposes, never for recreational purposes. “It is imperative to prevent the therapeutic use of standardized cannabis extracts or preparations for specific patients with specific indications, to avoid confusion with a general invocation of general cannabis use by the population,” the document’s editors note.

Currently, the use of this unregulated substance depends solely on the black market. “The patients have to go to a camel [dealer] to get their cannabis. We left these patients in the hands of drug dealers or friends who grow them when a healthcare professional should prescribe them,” explained Manuel Guzmán, professor of biomedicine at the Complutense University of Madrid and vice-president of the Spanish Observatory of Medicinal Cannabis, who regrets the Delay in legislation introducing cannabis as a legitimate therapy. “Doctors prescribe much stronger therapies like opiates. It’s like we’re talking about legalizing or banning beer while whiskey, vodka or rum were allowed,” he gave as an example.

Cannabis is “not a miracle drug that slows the progression of the disease,” but “a complementary therapeutic tool that improves the quality of life of patients,” stressed Guzmán. The Observatory estimates that around 200,000 patients in Spain can benefit from the use of this narcotic, which is already regulated in European Union countries such as Germany, Italy, the Czech Republic, Austria, Portugal, Austria, Belgium and the Netherlands , as well as in the United Kingdom.

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