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Opening of a medical cannabis clinic in Australia

A medical cannabis clinic opens in Australia, giving patients LEGAL access to the drug with a script – so what’s the deal?

  • A medical marijuana clinic has opened in Adelaide
  • Patients can get medical cannabis at the center for pain and other health issues
  • The clinic was opened by two doctors with training in alternative treatment

Adelaide’s first medical marijuana clinic has officially opened to the public, offering “alternative treatments” to people with chronic pain and mental health issues.

The IvyMed Clinic at the Pasadena Shopping Center in Adelaide was opened this week by doctors Hsin-Pei Lin and Sheng-Wen Cheng.

The IvyMed Clinic in the Pasadena Mall (pictured) has become Adelaide’s first medical marijuana clinic

“We are passionate about providing alternative treatments to our patients,” Dr. Cheng said.

“We are tailoring therapies with the goal of improving symptoms and improving patient outcomes.”

He said medical marijuana should only be recommended when patients have been unable to “find relief through other options.”

Both doctors have a strong background in alternative medicine and are both part of the approved prescriber scheme.

The scheme allows medical practitioners to supply products not included in the Australian Therapeutic Goods Register to patients with specific medical conditions.

Patients can be prescribed medical cannabis if they pass an eligibility test.

More Australians are using medicinal cannabis for pain relief and mental therapy as calls to make the drug more readily available become more mainstream (stock image)

More Australians are using medicinal cannabis for pain relief and mental therapy as calls to make the drug more readily available become more mainstream (stock image)

Doctor Hsin-Pei Lin (pictured) and Doctor Sheng-Wen Cheng opened the week for patients seeking alternative treatment

Doctor Hsin-Pei Lin (pictured) and Doctor Sheng-Wen Cheng opened the week for patients seeking alternative treatment

Doctor Sheng-Wen Cheng said medical cannabis should only be recommended when patients have not been able to

Dr Sheng-Wen Cheng said medical cannabis should only be recommended when patients have been unable to “find relief through other options”.

Since 2016, certain laws have been passed to allow the prescription and distribution of medical cannabis products to Australians.

There are now 260,000 prescriptions in Australia since medical cannabis was legalised.

Many have used medicinal cannabis for chronic pain and other health conditions.

Recreational marijuana use remains illegal in Australia.

But calls have intensified in recent years for cannabis to be legalized in Australia in a move that would follow Canada, a suite of European countries and 18 US states, including Colorado, Washington DC, New York and California.

A 2019 National Drug Strategy household survey found that a significant minority – over 40% of Australians – think cannabis should be legalized for personal use.

This compared to 2013, when 25.5% of citizens supported this decision.

A 2019 National Drug Strategy household survey found that more than 40 per cent of Australians believe cannabis should be legalized for personal use (pictured, a woman smokes in Canada)

A 2019 National Drug Strategy household survey found that more than 40 per cent of Australians believe cannabis should be legalized for personal use (pictured, a woman smokes in Canada)

The number of people who reported having used cannabis at some point in their life increased from 33.5% in 2001 to 38.1% in 2019.

But criminal lawyer and drug defense expert Jarryd Bartle says an increase in public support doesn’t necessarily translate into big gains in support when real legislation is put in place.

“Support for the legalization of recreational cannabis has grown significantly over the past few decades.

“In 2007, only 21% of Australians supported legalisation, but in 2019 support rose to 41% in the national drug-using household survey.

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