In a huge move for the very conservative country, Ireland is now allowing prescribed cannabis to be delivered within the nation’s borders, so that legal patients no longer need to travel to the Netherlands or other legal, European countries just to get the medicine they need.
This is thanks to a new ruling from Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly, who was allowing a temporary delivery service due to COVID, to minimize the amount of international travel being done and make sure patients still had access to their medicine. However, this service to help licensed, medical professionals legally get cannabis for patients has been so popular that it is now here to stay.
The delivery service, originating in the Netherlands, where medical cannabis is cultivated and legally sold, has been going on since April of this year. Before this was put in place, patients were making the trek across the border to the Netherlands to get cannabis. This is a costly and stressful trip, especially for those who are sick or have sick children. It’s also a legal gray area, despite cannabis being legal in the Netherlands and legal for certain medical purposes in Ireland, as patients were regularly bringing cannabis across the border themselves.
“Many patients and their families have shared stories with both me and officials in my Department about how this initiative has made a huge improvement to their lives,” Donnelly claimed in an official statement on the Ireland Department of Health website. “They spoke about the stress of having to travel regularly and the associated health risks with that, as well as their concerns that they would run out of their medication.
“I am so pleased that these problems will now be a thing of the past for them. There will no longer be a need for them to travel abroad in order to collect their prescribed cannabis products. Instead, they can focus on their health and wellbeing. The welfare of patients and their families comes first and I am happy to reassure them that they will no longer have to personally source their prescriptions.”
Access To Medical Cannabis In Ireland
While the program is still in its initial stages, having only been around since April of this year, it was a pretty simple switch for most who were used to making the trek to get cannabis. Most of the legal patients in the state are already using Transvaal Pharmacy based in Hague in the Netherlands, making the new service an easy transition, since this pharmacy is providing the delivered goods.
Plans are still in the works to finalize how the collection and delivery service will continue to function, but it is now set in stone that the service is here to stay. Cannabis licensing will still go through the Department of Health, and only patients with special permissions will be able to access the medical cannabis being provided.
As restrictions across the globe continue until the COVID pandemic can be controlled via vaccine, and patients everywhere continue to rely on medical cannabis to help with existing conditions, services like these make it easier to access medicine in a safe and legal way.