- About About
Medical Patient Resources Cannabis Care Certification Patient's Guide to Medical Cannabis Patient's Guide to CBD Talking to your doctor Become a Legal Medical Marijuana Patient The Medical Cannabis Patient’s Guide for U.S. Travel Guide to Using Medical Cannabis Cannabis Tincture, Salve, Butter and Oil Recipes Arthritis and Medical Cannabis Cancer and Medical Cannabis Chronic Pain and Medical Cannabis Gastrointestinal Disorders and Medical Cannabis HIV/AIDS and Medical Cannabis Movement Disorders and Medical Cannabis Multiple Sclerosis and Medical Cannabis Aging and Medical Cannabis Veterans and Medical Cannabis Medical Marijuana Conditions in Your Area Growing Cannabis Tracking Treatment & Gathering Data with Releaf App Medical Professional Resources Medical Cannabis Continuing Medical Education (CME) Cannabis Safety Medical Cannabis Research
- Legal Legal
Advocacy ASA Chapters Start an ASA Chapter Take Action Campaigns No Patient Left Behind End Pain, Not Lives Vote Medical Marijuana Medical Cannabis Advocate's Training Center Resources for Tabling and Lobby Days Strategic Planning Civics 101 Strategic Messaging Citizen Lobbying Participating in Implementation Movement Building Organizing a Demonstration Organizing Turnout for Civic Meetings Public Speaking Media 101 Patient's History of Medical Cannabis
Policy Policy Positions Model Federal Legislation Download Ending The Federal Conflict Public Comments by ASA Industry Standards Guide to Regulating Industry Standards Recognizing Science using the Data Quality Act Data Quality Act Briefs Fact Sheet on ASA's Data Quality Act Petition to HHS ASA Data Quality Act petition to HHS Information on Lawyers and Named Patients in the Data Quality Act Lawsuit Reports 2021 State of the States Cannabis and Cannabis Resin- Critical Review Preparation Document Medical Cannabis in America
- News News
- Join Join
Today, HealthCanada issued a report with several recommendations for how the country can implement an adult-use (recreational) cannabis program. One of the recommendations is that Canada should maintain a separate program for medical cannabis patients rather than merge the medical program into the adult-use program. This recommendation is in step with ASA's recommendations to states when considering adult-use cannabis programs.
The HealthCanada report recognizes that patients often seek difference forms cannabis and cannabis-derived products than what the typical adult-use consumer seeks to purchase. Maintaining a separately regulated system for medical cannabis patients is the best way that governments can ensure that patient needs are addressed in jurisdictions with medical and adult-use access. Washington State has experimented with merging its medical program into the I-502 adult-use program, which has led to reports of patients no longer have quality and consistent access to medical cannabis products.
The medical cannabis recommendations are as follows:
Advice to Ministers
The Task Force recommends that the federal government:
- Maintain a separate medical access framework to support patients
- Monitor and evaluate patients' reasonable access to cannabis for medical purposes through the implementation of the new system, with action as required to ensure that the market provides reasonable affordability and availability and that regulations provide authority for measures that may be needed to address access issues
- Review the role of designated persons under the ACMPR with the objective of eliminating this category of producer
- Apply the same tax system for medical and non-medical cannabis products
- Promote and support pre-clinical and clinical research on the use of cannabis and cannabinoids for medical purposes, with the aim of facilitating submissions of cannabis-based products for market authorization as drugs
- Support the development and dissemination of information and tools for the medical community and patients on the appropriate use of cannabis for medical purposes
- Evaluate the medical access framework in five years
One of the medical cannabis recommendations in the HealthCanada report that ASA does not agree with in the recommendation to tax medical and adult-use at the same rates. ASA strongly believes that medical cannabis should not be taxed because patients are already facing additional financial burdens that non-patients do not encounter. While the recommendation is likely in place to prevent alleged abuse of a medical tax-exemption, this concern should not override the needs and challenges of patients.
Despite the tax recommendation, ASA applauds HealthCanada for recognizing that medical and adult-use programs are best administered as separate programs. The patients of Canada will be better off because of it and US states considering merging these two approaches should benefit from the recommendations of this report and keep their programs separate.