Prescribing CBD and THC in NZ

So who says THC and CBD can’t be prescribed?

Not me. And not the British Medical Association either!! And ever since THC and CBD were added as prescription medicines, and the definition of “controlled drug” excludes prescription medicines, not the NZ legislation either!!

In the Introduction to the book, Therapeutic Uses of Cannabis by The British Medical Association, under the heading The Legal Situation, it reads as follows:

“Cannabis and certain psychoactive cannabinoids and derivatives (cannabinol and its derivatives tetrahydrocannabinol and 3-alkyl homologues or its tetra hydro derivatives) classified under Schedule 1 of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 as having no therapeutic benefit. They therefore can not be prescribed by doctors or dispensed by pharmacists and can only be possessed for research purposes with a Home Office licence. If the research involves clinical trials, further permission is required from the Medicines Control Authority.”

OK? So this is how it used to be in New Zealand too BEFORE the 2011 Amendment to the Medicines Regulations 1984 at which point tetrahydrocannabinol and cannnabidiol were added as prescription medicines and therefore classified as having therapeutic benefit. The British Medical Association’s book continues…

“Two other non-psychoactive cannibinoids, cannabidiol and cannabichromene, despite their structural similarity to cannabinol, are not controlled drugs; although not licensed as medicines, there is nothing to prevent a doctor from prescribing them.”

Since our legislation was copied from the UK, even if it could be argued that THC remains a “controlled drug” under the definition (and I would argue keenly against this interpretation since as a prescription medicine it is excluded from the defintion of “controlled drug”) cannabidiol is NOT a controlled drug AND it is a prescription medicine. So cannabidiol or CBD can be prescribed.

Furthermore, in favour of arguing that THC can be prescribed as well as CBD, because the UN Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs 1961 states that any drug that has a therapeutic function is not to be included in its prohibitive ambit and may be prescribed by doctors, and since our legislation derives from the UN Single Convention, I am persuaded that in NZ both THC and CBD (having legislated that they have therapeutic value by including them as “prescription medicines” in the Schedule to the Medicines Regulations) can be prescribed.

Full opinion : Letter to MedicalProtectionSociety_Kayll

Letter to NZMANZMA Dr Peterson letter re Applications for Licences under section 14

Standard Letter to Doctors  :   Letter to doctors – standard form for fibromyalgia


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