Tamara (Homes Down Under)

Should South Australia join the medical marijuana trials?

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    In my opinion SA should join the other states.

    I also agree with it's use for specific conditions...

     

     

    Medical marijuana trials: SA Liberals push for SA to be involved

     

    • LAUREN NOVAK POLITICAL REPORTER
    • THE ADVERTISER
    • APRIL 28, 2015 3:12PM

     

     

     

    Vic, Qld join NSW in medical marijuana trials

     

     

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    Medical marijuana plants at a medical marijuana dispensary in Oakland, California. Pic: AP

     

     

     

     

    SOUTH Australia should be more involved in trials of medical marijuana to treat illnesses, the Opposition says.

    The NSW Government in December announced three trials expected to involve hundreds of participants.A trial for children with severe epilepsy, who have not responded to traditional medicine, is expected to start first in NSW.It would be followed by trials for adults with terminal illness and people with nausea induced by chemotherapy.Queensland and Victoria have joined the trials but SA Premier Jay Weatherill​ has said SA will wait to see the results.index

    Opposition Leader Steven Marshall has called for a South Australian expert to be on the advisory panel.Mr Marshall said South Australian patients should also be eligible to be involved.“(The State Government) say they support the trials but they’re not getting involved and I think they’re really missing an opportunity,” he said.“This medical use of marijuana should really be something that we’re exploring here in South Australia but again we’ve been left behind.“There’s a great opportunity for us to be at the forefront ... to be looking at the opportunities that there quite obviously are for application here in South Australia.“If we have got suitable people here in SA we should be participating and make this a truly national trial.”Mr Marshall said he was not advocating that SA adopt the use of medicinal marijuana ahead of the outcome of the trial.

    How does medical marijuana work?

     

     

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    Health Minister Jack Snelling said SA “supports that (NSW) trial, will closely monitor it and cooperate as required”.“But there are no current plans to start a separate trial or replicate here in SA what NSW is already doing,” he said.“Medical opinion is currently divided on the use of medical marijuana.“There are already patients that will be participating in these trials and we will monitor it closely.”Greens MLC Tammy Franks will host a forum for MPs on Friday to discuss the need for “sick and suffering” South Australians to be able to take part in the trials.956189-f7fb06fe-ed65-11e4-a82d-68ff75e6542c.jpg

    A bottle of cannabis-infused oil used as medicine for a four-year-old girl who suffers from severe epilepsy in Colorado.

     

     

    “South Australia needs to get in the game, but without a captain’s call we are just waiting on the sidelines,” she said.“The Premier should show this leadership and also issue directives to police and child protection so they use appropriate discretion where a sick person or their family are sourcing medicinal cannabis options ... (as) has been done interstate.”

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    No argument from me. Like you, I think it has its place in modern medicine and could be used medically under prescription.

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    It sounds like a great idea for SA to be involved in the trials but would require suitably qualified people to run them and someone to pay for it. I suspect this is the sticking point rather than the government just not wanting to do it here.

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    No argument from me. Like you, I think it has its place in modern medicine and could be used medically under prescription.

     

    I have a family member who suffers from muscle spasticity and severe pain...it's a no brainer that they should be allowed to try, and then use it if it works.

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    There has been a petition (and a whole lot of work) going on with this issue.

    The other states (New South Wales) are further ahead in the legalisation process than South Australia is...but it is a step in the right direction for chronic pain sufferers.

     

    Legal dope farming: SA stands to benefit under federal Government plan for legal medical marijuana growing industry

     

    October 16, 2015 11:09pm

    PETER JEANPOLITICAL REPORTERThe Advertiser

     

     

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    CANNABIS crops will be legally grown in Australia in a Federal Government plan to allow medicinal marijuana to be delivered from “farm to pharmacy’’ for seriously ill patients.

    Federal Health Minister Sussan Ley will ton Saturday announce a proposal to amend the Narcotic Drugs Act to allow the controlled cultivation of cannabis for medicinal and scientific purposes.

    Several states are already collaborating on planned trials of medicinal marijuana products.

    South Australia is already moving to legalise the production of opium and the change to federal law could also prompt the state to consider establishing a legal cannabis-growing industry.

    If the trials are successful, the Therapeutic Goods Administration could agree to make cannabis products more broadly available to patients with a range of medical conditions, including cancer.

    90d841d8876ac49f8ea0dc3f1e658950?width=650Medical marijuana cultivation at the Ataraxia Center in Albion, Illinois, United States. AP Photo/Seth Perlman“This Government is incredibly sympathetic to the suffering of those Australians with debilitating illnesses and we want to enable access to the most effective medical treatments available,” Ms Ley said.

    Other Stories

     

    “Currently there are already systems in place to licence the manufacture and supply of medicinal cannabis-based products in Australia, however there is no mechanism to allow the production of a safe, legal and sustainable local supply.

    This had forced Australian patients, researchers and manufacturers to try and access limited supplies of legal medicinal cannabis from overseas.

     

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    Opposition Leader Bill Shorten last night announced that a future Labor Government would move to ensure Australians suffering from terminal and serious illnesses could legally access medicinal cannabis if it was prescribed by a doctor.

    “There are thousands of Australians who are suffering from unbearable pain, muscle spasticity from conditions like multiple sclerosis and nausea resulting from chemotherapy who may benefit from medicinal cannabis,’’ Mr Shorten said.

    The SA Government this week agreed to back a proposal by Liberal MP David Ridgway to legalise the production of opium in the state.

    f172d257ac2ed7651428203c0a49c06d?width=650The steps to consider.SA farmers would be able to cultivate and process alkaloid poppies to supply the pharmaceutical industry for the manufacture of painkillers.

    The Victorian and Tasmanian governments have both expressed interest in supporting the establishment of medical cannabis crops in their states.

    NSW is leading a nationally supported program of medicinal cannabis clinical trials, including for patients with terminal illnesses and those suffering from severe chemotherapy-related nausea.

    Queensland and Victoria are both planning to make cannabis products available to some children with drug-resistant epilepsy.

    The State Government is monitoring the trials and has been urged by the opposition to push for an SA expert to be included on panel overseeing the program.

    Ms Ley said the Federal Government had no intention of supporting the legalisation of marijuana for recreational use.

    3813330c1607d84dbe127135fe8ca6e8?width=316&api_key=e62jprfqb37dchg3qzg2jujrFederal Health Minister Sussan Ley.“At the end of the day, cannabis is classified as an illegal drug in Australia for recreational use and we have no plans to change that,” Ms Ley said.

    “In many cases the long-term evidence is not yet complete about the ongoing use of various

    medicinal cannabis products and it’s therefore important we maintain the role of medical

    professionals to monitor and authorise its use.”

    Australia is a signatory to the international Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, which requires the manufacture and import of drugs such as cannabis to be restricted exclusively to medical and scientific purposes.

    A federal licensing scheme will be established to assist state and territories that wish to grow cannabis for medicinal purposes.

    Ms Ley said new medicinal cannabis products would continue to be regulated by the Therapeutic Goods Administration.

    The Bill to enable the cultivation of legal medicinal cannabis is expected to be introduced into Parliament before the end of the year.

    Former prime minister Tony Abbott last year threw his support behind calls for medicinal marijuana to be made available to patients who needed it.

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    There has been so much progress on this issue.

    There are online sites taking registrations for future users...just waiting for when it's legal. An online store will be up and running providing prescriptions and dispensing the different products as soon as legislation allows it.

    Great news for many people who will have something else in their arsenal to combat many conditions.

     

     

    Why Medicinal Cannabis

     

    There are over four hundred compounds in cannabis, including cannabinoids, terpenoids, and flavonoids. Each has specific medicinal attributes, which combine synergistically to create a holistic effect, so that the therapeutic impact of the whole plant is greater than the sum of its parts. About eighty of these compounds are only found in cannabis plants.Cannabinoids relieve symptoms of illness by attaching to receptors found throughout the body: in the brain, organs, connective tissues, glands and immune cells. These receptors are named the endocannabinoid system (named after the plant that led to its discovery).

     

    The endocannabinoid system performs different tasks, but the goal is always the same: homeostasis (the maintenance of a stable internal environment).

     

    There are 3 types of cannabinoids:

    • Herbal: occur naturally only in the cannabis plant (phytocabbinoids)
    • Endogenous: produced naturally by humans and other animals (endocabbinoids)
    • Synthetic: cannabinoids produced in a lab

    Cabbinoids and Disease

     

    A lot of diseases actually are all just different symptoms of the same underlying root cause. They all develop because of a deficiency of cannabinoids. All vertebrates have an endocannabinoid system that regulates all bodily systems and helps every single cell type communicate with each other. A healthy body creates a steady stream of endocannabinoids to feed its internal cannabinoid receptors, and help everything in the body to work properly. A lack of well-fed receptors in any location will through off normal bodily activities and cause cells to malfunction.

    The cabbinoids in cannabis have the ability to replace a lack of endocabbinoids in a patient to feed this untapped bodily system and help

     

    the body to work better.medican-science-01.jpg

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    There has been a lot of progress with this issue...but red tape is now delaying things!

     

    SA News

    [h=1]Doctors say getting permission to prescribe medicinal cannabis is too difficult in SA[/h]

    Adam Langenberg, Political Reporter, The Advertiser

    March 30, 2017 7:00pm

     

     

    DOCTORS say obtaining permission to prescribe medicinal cannabis is a “pain in the backside”, intensifying pressure on the State Government to make it easier for patients to access the drug.

     

    Adelaide Cancer Centre oncologist Brian Stein said he had abandoned an attempt to complete the application process to provide the drug on a one-off basis and bemoaned the “arduous” process.

    Dr Stein said a shortage of data about how much of the drug should be used to treat different conditions and an inability to know exactly what doctors are prescribing were the main issues to overcome before he was comfortable prescribing medicinal cannabis.

    Dr Stein said he was approached by a cancer patient who was “very keen” to get a prescription to use medicinal cannabis, but she died before he completed the paperwork.

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    Medicinal marijuana products on sale at a dispensary in Los Angeles. Picture: AFPIf accredited under Special Access Scheme B, Dr Stein would have become South Australia’s second medical professional permitted to provide medicinal cannabis to a single patient.

    There are no South Australian “approved prescribers” of medicinal cannabis — medical professionals who are able to supply the drug to patients on a general basis.

    Dr Stein stressed he had no designs on becoming the state’s first authorised prescriber: “I’m not interested in becoming Mr Medicinal Marijuana, but I will consider individual patient requests”.

    To prescribe cannabis in South Australia, a doctor must obtain the approval of the Therapeutic Goods Administration, as well as the state Drugs of Dependence Unit.

    Dr Stein said he had a “number of substantive issues” with DDU’s application process.

    “The unit want you to prove the drug you’re prescribing does something useful and the scientific evidence on medicinal marijuana is not particularly strong,” he said.

    “I don’t have a book that says if you have nausea, then you should take this much of this particular strain of the drug. If you look at it as a scientist, one of the biggest issues with medicinal marijuana is what are we prescribing?

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    An indoor nursery for growing medical marijuana. Photo: istock“It’s not me saying ‘I don’t believe this could be useful’, but I need evidence to make regulators happy and evidence to make me happy that one patient will get the same stuff as the patient that came before them.”

    Greens MLC Tammy Franks said Dr Stein’s comments bolstered the case for controlled growing and testing of medicinal cannabis.

    “Doctors need to be given some guarantees about what they’re prescribing. They’re also given no protections and given no support and training,” she said.

    A spokesman for Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt said a medical practitioner could receive TGA approval to provide cannabis within four days by filling out a one-page Special Access Scheme B form.

    “States and territories have their own legislation around access to medicinal cannabis, including what type of practitioner can prescribe,” the spokesman said.

    “Creating a more consistent approach to patient access to medicinal cannabis is something the minister raised at COAG Health Council last week.”

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    player Medical cannabis guidelines explained

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    More progress...at last. Still difficult chronic use but we are getting there.

     

    Prescriptions for medicinal cannabis to be available under new South Australian rules from Monday

     

     

     

    Matt Smith, Sunday Mail (SA)

    April 22, 2017 9:53pm

     

     

     

     

    Subscriber only

    PATIENTS will have easier access to medicinal cannabis under new rules to take effect from Monday.

     

    Under the regulations, South Australian medical specialists will be able to prescribe medicinal cannabis to patients for short terms without State Government approval.

    However, the move will be balanced by other safety nets including the retention of strong checks and balances for those patients wanting prescriptions for two months or more.

    The State Government hopes the move will not only make it easier for patients to access medicinal cannabis but could open the door for a new industry producing the drug in South Australia.

    Acting Premier Kyam Maher told the Sunday Mail the State Government was committed to ensuring South Australians had access to the full range of treatments and services to promote the best health outcomes for patients and the community.

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    Patients will have easier access to medicinal cannabis under new rules to take effect from Monday. Photo: istock“This is about legal patient access and making it easier than most other states to access medicinal cannabis,” Mr Maher said.

    He said the state’s biomedical precinct on North Tce in the city could also play a key role in putting South Australia at the forefront of the new industry.

    “The opportunities for industry development of medicinal cannabis may also provide for high value jobs across the supply chain from research and development, growing, manufacture and transport and logistics,” he said. “South Australia has also written to the Federal Government about the possibility of export opportunities.”

    World research has shown medicinal cannabis can provide relief to patients with cancer, multiple sclerosis and childhood epilepsy.

    In November last year, the Federal Government made it easier for Australians to access medicinal cannabis but specialists had to get State Government approval to prescribe the drug.

    Medical specialists will still need State Government approval when medicinal cannabis is being prescribed for longer than two months or to a patient already using a drug like morphine. Federal Government approval to import an unregistered medicinal cannabis product is still required.

    Under SA law, it is an offence to possess cannabis, including cannabis oil, for personal use.

    Those caught with it face a maximum fine of $500. Those who supply or administer cannabis face a maximum fine of $2000 and two years’ jail.

    The new patient pathway aligns access to medicinal cannabis with existing legislation for other Schedule 8 medicines such as morphine.

     

     

    And from the SA health web site...

     

    Patient access to Medicinal Cannabis in South Australia

     

    SA Health is committed to ensuring South Australian consumers have access to the optimal range of treatments and services to promote the best health outcomes for patients and the community.Patients in South Australia can already access medicinal cannabis medicines as a result of federal legislative changes which came into effect in November 2016.The State Government has released a patient access pathway to clarify access.Importantly, medical practitioners must apply to the Commonwealth Department of Health for approval to supply and where necessary import, an unregistered medicinal cannabis product.To consider whether medicinal cannabis is an appropriate treatment option, a specialist medical practitioner, in discussion with their patient, considers the clinical information and evidence for medicinal cannabis in the condition to be treated.About the patient access pathway

     

    A patient access pathway (PDF 153KB)(opens in a new window) for medicinal cannabis has been developed following consultation with stakeholders, including medical professionals, health practitioner organisations, consumers and health consumer groups, and industry.Under the pathway, patients in South Australia can be supplied medicinal cannabis products prescribed by their medical specialist and dispensed by a pharmacist.Existing South Australian Controlled Substances legislation that regulates the prescribing and supply of Schedule 8 medicines in South Australia applies to Schedule 8 medicinal cannabis drugs.A section 18A authority is only required for treatment longer than 2 months, or before commencing treatment where the person is already prescribed a Schedule 8 drug (for a period exceeding 2 months) and for any person the medical practitioner reasonably believes to be dependent on drugs.A specialist medical practitioner is recognised by AHPRA as a specialist in the management of the disease being treated.Exemptions

     

    A section 18A authority is not required for patients:

    • aged 70 years or older
    • who are Notified Palliative Care Patients
    • who are not drug dependent, for regular use for a period of less than 2 months.

    Applications for authority to prescribe Schedule 8 medicinal cannabis products may be referred to an expert clinical panel within SA Health for advice on a case by case basis.One cannabis derivative, cannabidiol in preparations for therapeutic use containing 2% or less of other cannabinoids found in cannabis, is a Schedule 4 medicine. Supply of Schedule 4 cannabidiol medicines requires a prescription from a medical practitioner, and approval from the Commonwealth to prescribe and where necessary import an unregistered product. An authority for purposes of South Australian Controlled Substances legislation is not required to prescribe Schedule 4 cannabidiol medicines.To apply for approval to prescribe a Schedule 8 medicinal cannabis drug or to discuss authority requirements and exemptions in South Australia contact:Drugs of Dependence UnitPhone: 1300 652 584Fax: 1300 658 447Email: HealthDrugsofDependenceUnit@sa.gov.auTherapeutic Goods Administration (TGA)Phone: 1800 020 653Email: info@tga.gov.auClinical evidence

     

    The medicinal use of cannabis in clinical treatment is subject to ongoing discussion and investigation by health professionals.There is some clinical evidence (PDF 168KB)(opens in a new window) for use of cannabis and derivatives in severe chronic conditions unresponsive to existing treatments, however further research and development is progressing into the safety and efficacy of medicinal cannabis products, and to establish their role in clinical use.Medicinal cannabis products

     

    Cannabis for medical use is regulated as a medicine in Australia. Currently there are no medicinal cannabis products (PDF 193KB)(opens in a new window) lawfully manufactured in Australia and only limited products lawfully made overseas that might be approved for import. Medicinal cannabis products, with the exception of Sativex®, are not included on the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods (ARTG) which means they have not been subject to the same standards of safety and efficacy that apply to other prescription medicines in Australia. Unregistered medicines, including unregistered medicinal cannabis products can be legally imported on authorisation from the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) and Office of Drug Control (ODC).Progressing a patient access pathway for medicinal cannabis provides clarity for patients, doctors and other health practitioners about access in South Australia. It also provides certainty to potential new medicinal cannabis industry stakeholders.For more information about the patient access pathway to medicinal cannabis in South Australia:Medicines and Technology ProgramsDepartment of Health and AgeingEmail: medicinal.cannabis@sa.gov.auPhone: 8226 6169For information about industry development support in South Australia:Office of Industrial Hemp and Medicinal Cannabiswww.statedevelopment.sa.gov.au/officeihmcEmail: officeihmc@sa.gov.auPhone: 8463 5630

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