Victoria Health Minister David Davis said that he plans to amend the law to legalize clinical tests of medical marijuana. The announcement comes just days after Opposition Leader Daniel Andrews disclosed that he will make medical marijuana legal if he is elected in November.
Andrews on Sunday said the Labor party will ask the Victorian Law Reform Commission to advise it on the prescription, manufacture and distribution of medical marijuana, though he is against plans to legalize recreational use of marijuana, reported the Guardian.
Davis had earlier said in July that the Australia’s Coalition government isn’t considering legalizing the drug. His announcement comes after months of intense lobbying by Victorian families who want the medical use of the drug legalized, saying they had successfully used it to treat their seriously ill children in instances where other drugs failed.
Davis said a panel of regulatory and clinical experts will be hired to “work through the complex issues of obtaining approval to trial the use of cannabis compounds in treating a range of illnesses and conditions”. He will seek to have the Drugs, Poisons and Controlled Substances Act amended it order to pave way for clinical trials of marijuana and other highly-controlled drugs.
The Australia’s drug regulator has already approved a pharmaceutical-grade marijuana extract named Sativex, which is used to treat multiple sclerosis. Davis noted the drug will be investigated to find out whether it can be used to relieve pain in patients with cancer.
While Davis’ proposal was welcomed by pro-medical marijuana activists, it was criticized as being limited and a direct response to Andrews’s proposition. To register for a free 2-week subscription to ForexMinute Premium Plan, visit www.forexminute.com/newsletter.
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