Seriously ill Queenslanders will have faster access to medicinal cannabis under proposed law changes introduced in a new Bill to Parliament today.
Minister for Health and Ambulance Services Steven Miles said the government had introduced a bill to repeal the Public Health (Medicinal Cannabis) Act 2016 and introduced new legislation that makes it easier for patients and doctors to access medicinal cannabis.
Under the proposed changes, medicinal cannabis will be treated the same as other drugs of addiction (schedule 8 medicines) or prescription drugs (schedule 4).
“Our Government is committed to improving pathways for Queensland patients to access medicinal cannabis and this new legislation joins some of the most progressive laws in the country,” Minister Miles said.
“This law change will significantly streamline the prescription process by removing state-level approval and will ensure patients have access to the treatment they need sooner.
“This is about making it easier for patients and clinicians. These changes are designed to both help and protect patients.
“The Palaszczuk Government led Australia in 2015 by enabling doctors to prescribe medicinal cannabis to patients and that legislation was vital.
“Now that the treatment has progressed, it makes sense for a nationally consistent approach and for the Therapeutic Goods Administration to take carriage of the prescription process.
The Federal Government will maintain strict controls on the use of unapproved therapeutic goods through the Commonwealth licensing and approval system. It will remain illegal for the Queensland public to grow cannabis for medical purposes.
The Health and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2018 was introduced into the Queensland Parliament today and will be debated next year.
Minister for Health and Minister for Ambulance Services
The Honourable Steven Miles