Medicinal cannabis: what you need to know

new portal by NPS MedicineWise will help health professionals and consumers navigate evidence-based information about medicinal cannabis.

The new information helps explain the regulatory framework and process to access medicinal cannabis for both consumers and health professionals, and provides summaries on the latest evidence for medicinal cannabis.

The content supplements clinical guidance provided by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) for health professionals and provides additional information for consumer and pharmacist audiences.

Consumer-friendly content on the website includes answers to frequently asked questions in a downloadable article Medicinal cannabis: What would you like to know?, an infographic resource: Is medicinal cannabis suitable for me?, and an explainer articleMedicinal cannabis, explained.

There are also important resources for pharmacists7 questions pharmacists are asking about medicinal cannabis and Medicinal cannabis: dispensing process for pharmacists as well as resources for prescribers including full evidence summaries with links to the TGA’s clinical guidance and a flowchart for prescribers that outlines the steps to accessing medicinal cannabis.

NPS MedicineWise CEO Adj A/Prof Steve Morris says there’s a lot of interest in how cannabis can be used as medicine—and this means navigating the online information which can be a daunting task.

“Medicinal cannabis is a medicine that Australians want to know more about,” said Mr Morris.

“Accessing clear, accurate and up-to-date information about medicinal cannabis can be challenging for consumers and health professionals because there are many groups with an interest in this area, and a complex regulatory environment.

“Doctors and pharmacists are fielding questions from their patients about medicinal cannabis. Patients want to know if medicinal cannabis is suitable for them, and if so, how they can access safe and standardised medicinal cannabis products.

“At NPS MedicineWise, our role is to deliver accurate, balanced, evidence-based information about the quality use of medicines. This is why we’ve developed a portal where consumers and health professionals can find the evidence-based and practical information they need, presented in a clear, user-friendly format, with links to further information about State and Territory regulations and access pathways,” he said.

NPS MedicineWise worked with the TGA, health professionals, research and consumer organisations to gather the most up-to-date evidence for the use of medicinal cannabis in Australia and produce this content, which will be updated regularly.

“Medicinal cannabis is a fast-moving area where we will continue to see changes over the coming years as prescribers and patients become more familiar with these products and their potential uses. As the body of evidence grows, we will ensure our medicinal cannabis resources remain relevant and up-to-date for those seeking this information,” says Mr Morris.

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