The proposed changes to MMAR will make it far more difficult, if not outright impossible, for people choosing to utilize their constitutional rights to use cannabis (marihuana) according to what their medicinal requirements necessitate. The proposed Marijuana for Medical Purposes Regulations (MMPR) won't help control illegal activity, if anything, this proposed model will contribute to illegal activity by forcing sick, disabled, and dying Canadians, who won't be able to afford to bear the exorbitant costs entailed in the proposed model, as well as those whose pain levels exceed what the limits proscribe, back into the streets and the realm of criminal activity.
The proposed model will negatively affect medicinal cannabis exemptees in the following ways:
- It unduly limits the amount of cannabis (marihuana) those Authorized To Possess would be legally entitled to possess.
- It interferes in the amount a physician is allowed to prescribe; moreover, how that (interference) relates to pain management needs to be considered.
- Being on a fixed incomes, the costs which the proposed model would incur – assuming no subsidization occurs – would far exceed what most would seeking access would be able to afford.
- Currently, those Authorized To Possess minimize and or nullify expenses incurred by opting for either PPL's or DG's to provide monthly allotments of cannabis.
Currently, hundreds of thousands of dollars (across Canada) are saved every month in pharmaceutical prescription costs alone thanks to those who opt to use cannabis medicinally. That does not even begin to take into consideration costs incurred such as office visits, E..R. treatment and/or hospitalization as a result of the side effects of the pharmaceuticals (once) prescribed. The proposed model offends both the integrity and sanctity of holistic well-being for both ATP holders and the various Provinces that make up Canada.
The idea that the proposed Marijuana for Medical Purposes Regulations (MMPR) will allow for easier access for patients is meant to impart the idea that by broadening the category of who gets to authorize the use of medicinal cannabis it would effectively provide a comfort zone wherein doctors shed their existing concerns about prescribing medicinal cannabis and get on board. Nothing could be further from the truth! According to an article (Globe and Mail, Mon. Dec. 17) entitled “Medical marijuana move angers health professionals” Anna Reid, president of the Canadian Medical Association, which represents Canada’s 76,000 physicians summed it up by saying, “The federal government established the program and is now abdicating its role as a regulator of medical marijuana.” She also said that doctors still have real problems about being asked to prescribe a drug that is not rigorously tested and that will continue to grow worse under the new regulations. “It’s the equivalent of asking doctors to prescribe while blindfolded,” Dr. Reid said.
Claims (by the Minister of Health) that the current medical marijuana regulations have left the system open to abuse is more an indictment of your supervision/management of the current regulations, as directed by Health Canada, than it is an indictment of the current regulations. After all, to have mismanaged the program to the extent that it received complaints from other stakeholders is one thing, having MMAR deemed unconstitutional on eight occasions by the courts (in just over a decade) is quite another! Together, however, they constitute a a clear and irrefutable indictment. It is small wonder that legislation pertaining to the possession and production of cannabis is even recognized by law today.
Considering Health Canada is currently embroiled in court actions where issues of constitutionality regarding MMAR are at stake, the idea of promoting such a severe remedy as outlined in the proposed model only serves to demonstrate that the health and welfare of those Authorized To Possess who rely on PPL's and DG”s as established under the current model are of no consequence to Health Canada or the current Government.
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