Government takes teeny, tiny, step towards cannabis reform

It’s a start, nowhere near good enough but it is at least a start on cannabis reform.

The Government will announce tomorrow that it is removing a significant hurdle to getting access to medicinal cannabis in New Zealand.

It is understood doctors will be given the right to approve patients’ requests for cannabis products, rather than Government ministers.

Health Minister Jonathan Coleman strongly hinted at the change today.  

“The question is whether we could make that process a lot less bureaucratic and give people quicker access in cases where they do need that access,” he told reporters at Parliament this afternoon.

“The real question is does it need to be signed off by a minister. And that answer is it probably doesn’t.”

Requiring Associate Health Minister Peter Dunne to approve applications “could be a bit too much bureaucracy”, Coleman said.

Dunne is currently reviewing the rules for considering applications for cannabis-based medicines and is expected to report back tomorrow.

Coleman said it was “probably more likely” that the responsibility for approving medicinal cannabis would be delegated to specialists rather than GPs.

“But we’ll see,” he said.

Peter Dunne is part of the problem not part of the solution.

The sooner the government doesn’t need his posturing and preening the better.

 

– NZ Herald


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