The NZMCC says some medical practitioners are importing products and selling directly to patients, taking advantage of a loophole in Section 25 of NZ’s Medicines Act.
That section provides an exemption allowing all authorised prescribers to “procure the supply of any medicine”; including approved and unapproved medicines. Among other things, it allows an prescriber that is authorised get a medicine by direct importation.
The Council claims presently there is certainly less oversight that is regulatory of 25 imports than vitamins sold in supermarkets.
While benefiting patients through lower cost products being available, the situation is impacting on the viability of local producers and distributors who cannot compete on price at this point. Among some of NZMCC’s other concerns is that some of these imported products are of “unknown consistency” and quality.
“The Ministry of wellness does not appear to be in a position to do much about physicians circumventing the Scheme,” said Manu Caddie, seat regarding the NZMCC. “Unlicensed sellers of other cannabis items are actually a matter for the authorities; but they probably respect it as a priority that is low to more serious crime”.
One of the solutions offered by NZMCC is the descheduling or regulating lower dose CBD via Natural Health Products legislation that it says will increase access and lower prices.
“The Ministry would also greatly improve oversight and better protect patients,” said Mr. Caddie.
Under New Zealand’s Medicinal Cannabis Scheme, compliance requirements and the costs that result from pharmaceutical-grade GMP manufacturing are putting producers that are local a disadvantage. NZMCC claims to create neighborhood and legitimately recommended services and products more available, ACC (Accident payment company) or WINZ (Work and Income brand new Zealand) could approve funding to automatically subsidise medicines.
Just four claims for prescription medical cannabis have been successful in securing ACC subsidy since last year, and over the last 5 years the majority of claims have involved a appeal that is complex separate review procedure.
The Brand new Zealand healthcare Cannabis Council is a business relationship representing around 30 companies that are licensed