The Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine Registered Two Bills on the Regulation of Medical Cannabis Circulation

The Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine Registered Two Bills on the Regulation of Medical Cannabis Circulation
30.06.2021

The issue of legalizing medical cannabis has been discussed in the Ukrainian society for several years. Individuals who need access to hemp-derived medicines include patients with epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, depression, cancer requiring palliative care, people with post-traumatic stress disorder, and many others.

By Resolution No. 324 dd. April 7, the Cabinet of Ministers has already excluded some drugs based on synthetic cannabinoids that mimic the action of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) from the list of narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and precursors. However, given the cost of these drugs, not a lot of patients will be able to access them.

General regulatory bill on medical cannabis: Details

Currently, MPs continue to work towards the development of legislation on the legalization of medical cannabis. In particular, on June 2, bill No. 5596 was registered to regulate the circulation of hemp for medical, scientific and scientific-technical purposes. Its goal is to expand the list of cannabis-based medicines.

The bill provides for the legalization of the cultivation of plants for treatment, research of drugs based on medical cannabis and the creation of a body to control its circulation.

The document provoked a mixed reaction in society. Supporters of legalizing medical cannabis claim that bill No. 5596 does not provide for the exclusion of cannabis plants from the list of narcotic substances.

Alternative bill: How is it different from the initial one?

Already on June 22, the Verkhovna Rada registered an alternative draft law – No. 5596-1. It provides for the consolidation of the concept of medical practice, which is defined as an activity associated with a set of special measures aimed at promoting health improvement, improving sanitary culture, preventing diseases and disabilities, as well as diagnostics, assistance to persons with acute and chronic diseases and rehabilitation of sick and disabled people. The bill also expands the rights to health care by including a clause on the availability of necessary medicines.

In addition, the deputies propose to introduce the concept of "hemp plants" at the legislative level to change their classification into hemp plants for industrial purposes and hemp plants for medical and industrial purposes, as well as to exclude hemp plants that will be used for industrial purposes from the list of narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and precursors.

On June 29, both bills were included in the agenda. On June 30, they will be considered at a meeting of the Committee on Public Health, Medical Assistance and Medical Insurance.


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