drugs and poisons are grouped together in Schedules that require similar regulatory controls over their availability.
CANNABIDIOL (CBD) in preparations for therapeutic use containing 2 per cent or less of other cannabinoids found in cannabis.
# CANNABIS (including seeds, extracts, resins and the plant, and any part of the plant) when prepared or packed for human therapeutic use, when:
a) cultivated or produced, or in products manufactured, in accordance with the Narcotic Drugs Act 1967; and/or
b) for use in products manufactured in accordance with the Narcotic Drugs Act 1967; and/or
c) imported as therapeutic goods, or for use in therapeutic goods, for supply, in accordance with the Therapeutic Goods Act 1989; and/or
d) in therapeutic goods supplied in accordance with the Therapeutic Goods Act 1989, except when:
i) it is a product to which item 4, 8, 10, 11 or 12 of Schedule 5A to the Therapeutic Goods Regulations 1990 applies; or
ii) separately specified in Schedule 4; or
iii) separately specified in the NABIXIMOLS entry in this Schedule; or
iv) in hemp seed oil for purposes other than internal human therapeutic use containing 50 mg/kg or less of cannabinoids.
# NABIXIMOLS (botanical extract of Cannabis sativa which includes the following cannabinoids: tetrahydrocannabinols, cannabidiol, cannabinol, cannabigerol, cannabichromene, cannabidiolic acid, tetrahydrocannabinolic acids, tetrahydrocannabivarol, and cannabidivarol, where tetrahydrocannabinols and cannabidiol (in approximately equal proportions) comprise not less than 90 per cent of the total cannabinoid content) in a buccal spray for human therapeutic use.
# TETRAHYDROCANNABINOLS when extracted from cannabis for human therapeutic use, when:
a) included in products manufactured in accordance with the Narcotic Drugs Act 1967; and/or
b) imported as therapeutic goods, or for use in therapeutic goods, for supply, in accordance with the Therapeutic Goods Act 1989; and/or
c) in therapeutic goods supplied in accordance with the Therapeutic Goods Act 1989, except when:
i) it is in a product to which item 4, 8, 10, 11 or 12 of Schedule 5A to the Therapeutic Goods Regulations 1990 applies; or
ii) in hemp seed oil, containing 50 mg/kg or less of tetrahydrocannabinols when labelled with either of the following warning statements: (A) Not for internal use; or (B) Not to be taken; or
iii) in products for purposes other than for internal human use containing 50 mg/kg or less of tetrahydrocannabinols; or
iv) separately specified in the NABIXIMOLS entry in this Schedule.
CANNABIS (including seeds, extracts, resins, and the plant and any part of the plant when packed or prepared), except:
a) when separately specified in these Schedules; or
b) processed hemp fibre containing 0.1 per cent or less of tetrahydrocannabinols and hemp fibre products manufactured from such fibre; or
c) in hemp seed oil for purposes other than internal human use containing 50 mg/kg or less of cannabinoids.
ADDITIONAL CONTROLS ON POSSESSION OR SUPPLY OF POISONS INCLUDED IN SCHEDULE 4 OR 8
1. Poisons available only from or on the prescription or order of an authorised medical practitioner. CANNABIS for human use.
DRUGS REQUIRED TO BE LABELLED WITH A SEDATION WARNING – Cannabis
Source: Poisons Standard February 2017. https://www.legislation.gov.au/Details/F2017L00057
Page updated February 2017
In the USA…
Cannabis is classified as Schedule I which is equivalent to Australia’s Schedule 9 or the most restrictive classification.
The Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs of 1961 is an international treaty to prohibit production and supply of specific (nominally narcotic) drugs and of drugs with similar effects except under licence for specific purposes, such as medical treatment and research.
The Single Convention repeatedly affirms the importance of medical use of controlled substances. The Preamble notes that “the medical use of narcotic drugs continues to be indispensable for the relief of pain and suffering and that adequate provision must be made to ensure the availability of narcotic drugs for such purposes”. Articles 1, 2, 4, 9, 12, 19, and 49 contain provisions relating to “medical and scientific” use of controlled substances. In almost all cases, parties are permitted to allow dispensation and use of controlled substances under a prescription, subject to record-keeping requirements and other restrictions.
Ensuring safe and responsible supply of medicinal cannabis
The Australian Government is taking further action to enable the safe and legal distribution of medicinal cannabis products for adults and children suffering from painful and chronic conditions. 15 February 2017.
Australian State laws on the possession, supply and cultivation of Cannabis vary from state to state.
CANNABIS LAWS IN BRIEF
Cannabis possession is illegal except under certain circumstances in each Australian state or territory.
Here are links to information on Cannabis for medical purposes from each state and territory’s health department as at 25 February 2017.
AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY
Prescription of medicinal cannabis products in the ACT.
NEW SOUTH WALES
Cannabis and cannabis products for therapeutic purposes
- The NSW Government is committed to developing a better understanding of the potential for cannabis and/or cannabis products to alleviate symptoms or potentially treat a range of debilitating or terminal illnesses.
Information on prohibited drugs laws in the Northern Territory (NT).
The Public Health (Medicinal Cannabis) Act 2016 was passed by Queensland Parliament on 12 October 2016. The Act commenced on 1 March 2017.
Patient access to medicinal cannabis in South Australia.
The Tasmanian Government is developing a Controlled Access Scheme (CAS) to allow patients to access unregistered medical cannabis products under prescription from their treating medical specialist, in limited circumstances where conventional treatment has been unsuccessful.
The Access to Medicinal Cannabis Act 2016 passed the Victorian Parliament on 12 April 2016, enabling access to medicinal cannabis to defined groups of patients.
The Medicines and Poisons Regulation Branch of the Western Australian Department of Health provides advice, develops policy and administers regulatory controls.
State Cannabis legislation varies in each state.
All Cannabis cultivation (planting, watering or tending to even one marijuana plant) offences attract a criminal conviction.