Spanish General Council of Pharmacies propose a “pilot test” for the sale of medicinal cannabis

The General Council of Pharmacists has proposed this Monday to carry out a pilot test in pharmacies to assess the use of cannabis for therapeutic purposes, a product that, in the opinion of the president of pharmacists, could have a similar use and conditions of use to those that have other compounds such as morphine .

In the subcommittee that analyzes in Congress the possible medicinal use of cannabis in Spain , several experts have intervened this Monday, called to contribute to the debate raised around the use of cannabis for therapeutic purposes, among them the president of the General Council of Pharmacists, Jesús Aguilar, and that of the Psychiatric Society, Celso Arango, who has warned of the risks to mental health that its consumption entails .

Aguilar has suggested that “cannabis must have similar authorization and use conditions” to those that operate in Spain with products such as morphine and has opened the door for, at one time, community pharmacies -and not just hospital ones- dispense cannabinoid-based products that the Medicines Agency may authorize .

These clinical situations, he said, could require both the sale of the finished product and that of the master formulation, which implies the manipulation of the plant by pharmacists .

The highest representative of Spanish pharmacists has proposed carrying out a pilot test in pharmacies to assess the use of cannabis for therapeutic purposes that will serve to collect data on the efficacy and safety of the use of cannabis-derived products.

“Everything under the strict supervision of the Spanish Agency for Medicines and Health Products”, Aguilar pointed out, who considers that said study would make it possible to determine whether the medicinal use of cannabis-derived products can be admitted and under what conditions , as well as the risks of A misuse.

“We believe it is time to act with the appropriate scientific, technical and health rigor to respond to the interest and demand for the use of cannabis for the treatment of certain symptoms of different pathologies, a response in which – we insist – the safety and protection of the health of patients “, he explained.

Jesús Aguirre has also denounced the “irregular market” that is being generated with products that are not medicines and that are positioning themselves in the market and that generate “a clear deception of citizens” and put their health at risk.

Cannabis and the risk of mental illness

In the same forum, Celso Arango, president of the Spanish Society of Psychiatry, has intervened, who has asked to limit the number of patients to whom cannabis can be administered as much as possible and to take into account the risk of suffering from psychotic disorders, especially in the younger population.

“There is a relationship between cannabis use and depression, anxiety disorders, suicide, attendance at psychiatric emergencies or a decrease in intelligence quotient,” said Celso Arango, who showed parliamentarians data on the deterioration of mental health in places where cannabis use has been legalized .

However, Arango has recognized that all medications have contraindications and that it is up to the regulatory agencies to determine what the indications of each product are. “In some cases, the benefit is worth more than the side effect (…) and in other cases it is not worth taking the drug because it would do more harm than good,” he pointed out.

According to the criteria of this psychiatrist, an authorization for the medicinal use of marijuana will lead to “an increased incidence of mental disorders as a risk switching factor” if that leads to an increase in the number of people who have access to the product.


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