Health Minister Cameron Dick wants Queensland to lead Australia on the road to making medicinal cannabis available to stricken patients.
Article by Brisbane Times
Mr Dick said it was clear the Queensland community had a “great hunger” for medicinal cannabis and the government had been considering legislative ways to address it.
“I want to ensure Queensland leads Australia in this space,” he said.
“In the very near future, I will be announcing a little bit more.”
His comments follow reports state cabinet is on the verge of considering proposed legislation to allow medicinal cannabis to be prescribed and dispensed to patients.
Mr Dick said public opinion on the issue had evolved and, as such, “the government needs to shift as well”, adding successful legislation could be in place by the end of the year.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said she hoped any bills would have bipartisan support so the substance could be used to relieve symptoms in those suffering from epilepsy, multiple sclerosis and terminal illnesses.
Opposition health spokesman Mark McArdle said the Liberal National Party supported medicinal cannabis in principle but more information, in particular a discussion paper, would need to be seen.
It comes after federal parliament last week passed laws allowing the cultivation of medicinal cannabis and an announcement that a cannabis-derived capsule would be made available to more than 300 NSW cancer sufferers unresponsive to traditional anti-nausea and vomiting treatments while undergoing chemotherapy.
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