Medical marijuana getting bogged down in red tape

Medical marijuana getting bogged down in red tape

The Health Ministry said earlier this week that it will be opening a special department to deal with issues pertaining to the prescription and sale of medical marijuana. However, despite this small sign of progress in implementing legislation passed 10 months ago on the use of medical marijuana, those seeking relief seem no close to actually getting it.

The delay is due partly to the fact that growing and processing marijuana for medical use in Greece was not legalized until March, and many technical aspects of the law’s implementation have still not be legislated. In the meantime, marijuana-based medicines have to be imported via the National Organization for Medicine (EOF), which is only just starting to set up its committee for approving foreign imports and briefing doctors on the requirements for prescribing the drugs.

Doctors meanwhile can apply to EOF for “emergency” imports on a case-by-case basis, but this is a complicated procedure that very few medical professionals are aware of.

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