The Legalisation of Medical Cannabis Takes Effect in Croatia

  • Pharmacies are responsible for dispensing the product, but thus far have not received instructions on how to do so. The drug is designed to alleviate the effects of diseases like cancer and epilepsy. The amount required for treatment must be prescribed every 30 days.

Last December a commission of experts organised by Croatia's Health Ministry decided that the use of marijuana for therapeutic purposes had to be legalised. The group, made up of doctors, and taking into account the latest research in the sector, concluded that its applications were very useful for certain treatments. This, and their knowledge that many patients who needed this medicine ended up purchasing it on the black market, led them to opt for regulation.

As of today, October 15, 2015, the use of marijuana for medical purposes is allowed in Croatia. A regulation on medical marijuana was passed governing its use to ease the symptoms of multiple sclerosis, cancer, epilepsy, AIDS and other related diseases.

According to the regulations, certain medicines that contain THC (grass's psychoactive component) can be sold in pharmacies to patients, just like other prescription medications. In fact, the instructions make it clear that the product must be prescribed every 30 days, along with the amount required for treatment. For now, this amount may not exceed 0.75 grams.

This is great news for Croatian patients needing new resources to endure the discomfort they suffer. However, the country must first deal with a major snag: its pharmacies have not received instructions on how to prepare certain ointments, nor the steps to take when dispensing the products.

The information they have received to date has been from the media. Thus, it may take a few weeks for all those involved to understand how to proceed to make the measure a success.


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