• March 31, 2020
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  • MEDCAN: patient support and advocacy in Switzerland

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    Franziska Quadri, President of the Medical Cannabis Association Switzerland (MEDCAN), tells MCN about MEDCAN’s advocacy work and the need for legislative change.

    Switzerland’s Medical Cannabis Association (MEDCAN) was founded in 2014 with the aim of giving medical cannabis patients a base to connect with each other and a voice to exert political and social pressure.

    In addition to providing support for patients and caregivers and campaigning for less severe cannabis policies in Switzerland, MEDCAN offers educational resources for the general public and for clinicians interested in prescribing medical cannabis.

    Franziska Quadri, President of MEDCAN, tells Medical Cannabis Network about MEDCAN’s advocacy work and the need for legislative change.

    What is the current legal and medical status of cannabis in Switzerland?

    As attitudes towards cannabis are changing worldwide, many people today feel that it is no longer a problem to use cannabis for medical purposes. But this is not the case in Switzerland. Since 2011, doctors have been allowed to prescribe cannabis drugs for medical purposes under certain conditions. According to the Federal Office of Public Health (FOPH), more than 100,000 people in Switzerland use medical cannabis, but only a few thousand have a corresponding licence from the FOPH.

    The conditions to legally obtain cannabis are still complicated and the legally available products are lowdosed and very expensive. Today’s legal regulations actually make it impossible to get proper treatment with cannabis for serious illnesses or diseases. The resulting costs are enormous when high doses are used.

    Cannabis products and cannabis flowers with less than 1% THC and a high proportion of CBD are allowed in Switzerland and can be legally purchased in shops and on the internet.

    Recreational consumption is prohibited. Both the possession and the use of cannabis fall under the narcotics law and are therefore illegal. However, according to Art. 19b2, anyone who ‘prepares’ or carries up to 10g for her own use is exempt from punishment. This law came into force in October 2013.

    Read full article here: https://www.healtheuropa.eu/medcan-patient-support-and-advocacy-in-switzerland/98323/

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