Health Minister Chris Fearne said in a press conference today that he will be submitting an amendment to the Drug Dependence Act of 2015 that would allow easier access to medicinal cannabis for patients in Malta.
This comes after many doctors and patients complained that the current system “involved too much bureaucracy and many could not get access to the medicinals they needed,” said Mr. Fearne.
Following this, Parliament will now have to discuss the use of medicinal cannabis in Malta.
If this amendment is approved, patients will be able to visit their family doctors and get a prescription for medical cannabis without having to visit a specialist.
However, “no products prescribed by a doctor can be used for smoking, and these products can only be purchased from a pharmacy using a control card,” said Mr. Fearne.
This means that, unlike in states in the US like Colorado, California or the city of Las Vegas, or in Canada, only artificial products with cannabis extracts will be available for medicinal use.
The natural flower that most people are familiar with will remain illegal in Malta.
Instead, a generic pharmacological version with medicinal extracts will be available on the Maltese market.
Mr. Fearne also said in the press conference that the Minister for the Economy Chris Cardona would be submitting proposals allowing manufacturers to start producing the above medicinals in Malta.
The importation from abroad of medicinals would only be allowed by licensed importers he also said.
He pointed out that each medicine that is prescribed in Malta will have to have been approved by either the local medicines authority or the EU’s medicines watchdog.