The law that allows for the prescription of cannabis to the severely ill is expected to come into effect in 2017. The purpose of the legislation is intended to allow those who do not have regular access to cannabis an easier time obtaining the product.
“Our goal is that seriously ill people are looked after to the best of our ability,” Federal Health Minister Hermann Gröhe said.
One of the most notable parts of the legislation states that the medical cannabis will be reimbursed by the patients’ medical insurance.
“…we want that for the seriously ill patients the cost of cannabis as a medicine will be taken by their health insurance, if they cannot be helped otherwise,” stated Gröhe.
Although the legislation may shine promise for those who look to its effects for relief, German Hemp Association, a lobby group which advocates for the legalization of cannabis, criticized the legislation for requiring the participation of all patients in cannabis research in order to be reimbursed for their cannabis.
At the current time, out of the 5,000 patients that utilize medical cannabis, only 500 have acquired permits to smoke cannabis as a painkiller, which are mainly distributed by the Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices.
In the future, German health officials hope to approve sites to grow legal medical marijuana on, however is unlikely to happen until the infrastructure has been set up to accept this type of shift, which is expected to come with the medical marijuana legalization in 2017.
Featured Image Source: DW.com
Way to go Germany! In addition to Australia’s medical cannabis legalization in February, and all of the states within the US taking a stand on the cannabis issue, it’s pleasing to see the view of the world shifting!
What do you think? What is your country/state’s position on cannabis?