Australia: Medicinal Cannabis Leadership Program officially launched at Victoria Parliament House. But Why Aren’t The Australian Medical Profession Prescribing Medical Cannabis ?

Cohen writes…Medicinal Cannabis Leadership Program officially launched at Victoria Parliament House

Here’s what he says about the launch of the  Cann10 Australia Medicinal Cannabis Leadership Program

Senior cannabis industry executives, thought leaders, clinicians, scientists and politicians gathered today at Victoria Parliament House to officially launch the Cann10 Australia Medicinal Cannabis Leadership Program.

Cann10 Australia Chairman, Dr Henry Pinskier, opened the event by addressing the extraordinary demand for high-quality training in this new industry, not just in Australia, but around the world. And that the Medicinal Cannabis Leadership Program would finally bring,

‘A quality and comprehensive educational process, covering a diverse range of topics, both in respect of Australian and international conditions and with a clear intent to take this offering into Asia’

Minister for Agriculture, The Honourable Jaala Pulford, spoke about Victorian Government’s role in trailblazing medicinal cannabis legislation in Australia, and on the crucial role this Program will play in the future of the industry, saying,

‘Victoria has always been at the fore-front of medicinal cannabis in Australia and education is vital to establishing the medicinal cannabis industry in our state’

Cann10 Australia’s Program Director, Rhys Cohen, stressed the importance of Cann10’s comprehensive educational approach in such a new, vertically integrated and dynamic industry, and pointed out that,

‘To operate intelligently in the medicinal cannabis industry, people must be able to understand every part of the supply chain, and how they work together’

Also in attendance was Minister for Small Business, Innovation and Trade, The Honourable Philip Dalidakis MP; Cann10 Directors John Rosenberg and Asaf Katz; and numerous CEOs, Directors and senior cannabis industry executives from Cann Group, Creso Pharma, LeafCann, Canndeo, Green C Medical, UTT Biopharma and more.

The Cann10 Australia Medicinal Cannabis Leadership Program will commence in August 2017 and run weekly evening classes for 8 weeks. The Program is delivered in partnership with DeakinCo., the corporate training arm of Deakin University, and is endorsed by Prof Jon Watson, Dean of Medicine at Deakin University.

The Program has received significant attention and has recently been covered in The Age, Leafly and various industry blogs.

You can contact Cohen via Linked In

This development comes in the nick of time, we’d suggest, as the medical profession isn’t exactly embracing medical cannabis in Australia.

The Australian Broadcasting  Corporation reported only yesterday  that hardly any doctors are prescribing and that product is sitting in warehouses unused

They write,

Fewer than 150 people in Australia have ever been given approved access to medicinal cannabis products and there are only 25 authorised prescribers of the drugs, according to evidence at a Senate estimates committee.

Officials from the Health Department told the hearing that figure had only increased by two since February, and most of those doctors were in New South Wales.

“We now have 25, it would have been good to have a greater increase but we are responsive to what applications we receive from ethics committees, so we can’t write these things ourselves,” said the department’s deputy secretary in charge of drug regulation, adjunct Professor John Skerritt.

Patients can access medicinal cannabis products either through a special access scheme, or from an authorised prescriber.

The committee was told that since the first application in 1992, a total of 89 patients had been given access to a small number of medicinal cannabis products through the special access scheme, and another 41 were issued prescriptions by an authorised doctor.

More at

And in Western Australia the medical profession quite simply won’t have anything to do with cannabis. Ethics committees, lack of education in the medical community and an element of conservatism appear to be the benchmarks


The Australian Doctor reports

An entire state’s doctors have shunned medical cannabis

None of WA’s 10,679 doctors have applied to prescribe medical cannabis since it was legalised in November.

According to the AMA WA, the lack of interest is because doctors do not believe there is evidence to prescribe medical cannabis for anything other than in paediatric epilepsy and MS.

President Dr Andrew Miller tells Australian Doctor: “We don’t just prescribe something that is trendy or popular with the public.”

The situation has drawn the anger of WA Premier Mark McGowan, who has convened an urgent roundtable with doctors next month to find out why they do not see value in prescribing it for terminal illness, chronic pain or chemotherapy-induced nausea.

“I know there are hundreds, if not thousands of people, who want this opportunity. The government wants them to have this opportunity,” he says.

“For many people, it’s better than morphine-based relief and lots of people have been calling for it.”

But Dr Miller says medical cannabis companies have been overstating the potential benefits for conditions other than paediatric epilepsy or MS.

“[Medical cannabis] is not anything better or cheaper [nor does it have] fewer side effects than the drugs that we have available to treat things like chronic pain.”

Dr Miller says he would only support medical cannabis being used for chronic pain if it was part of a clinical trial.

“We’re always keen on any drug that is effective for our patients … but it must go through the process like any other drug.”

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