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Home > Dail Eireann debate. Written answer 306 - Medicinal products availability [41306/17] [Cannabis products].

[Oireachtas] Dail Eireann debate. Written answer 306 - Medicinal products availability [41306/17] [Cannabis products]. (03 Oct 2017)

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306. Deputy Mick Barry asked the Minister for Health the number of applications that have been received in the past year by the HSE from persons seeking a licence to use medicinal cannabis products here; the number of these applications that were granted; and the criteria that were used in accepting or rejecting applications [41306/17]


Minister for Health (Deputy Simon Harris): The Deputy will be aware that cannabis is listed in Schedule 1 of the Misuse of Drugs Regulations which means that it is subject to the strictest level of control; however, under the Misuse of Drugs legislation it is open to me as Minister for Health to consider granting a licence to an Irish-registered medical practitioner for access to medical cannabis for a named patient.


  The Chief Medical Officer has advised that the granting of such a licence must be premised on an appropriate application being submitted to my Department, which is endorsed by a consultant who is responsible for the management of the patient and who is prepared to monitor the effects of the treatment over time.


  A licence application endorsed by the patient’s medical consultant and submitted under the Misuse of Drugs Acts, use must include:

  - an outline of the treatment the patient has received to date and justification from the doctor as to why it is appropriate in their patient’s specific circumstances to prescribe a cannabis-based product;

  - details of the cannabis-based product which it is proposed to prescribe and administer to the patient;

  - the source of the cannabis-based product; and

  - arrangements for the ongoing monitoring and care of the patient once the cannabis-based treatment has been initiated.


  To date a valid licence application has been received by my Department in relation to one patient. A licence was subsequently granted to that applicant


 Where consultants require further information or clarification in relation to the licence application process, he or she should contact the Department of Health directly


 Ultimately it is the decision of the clinician, in consultation with their patient, to prescribe or not prescribe a particular treatment for a patient under their care and to make an application for a licence for cannabis for medical purposes. The Minister for Health has no role in the clinical decision-making process.

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