“Most know about CBD and THC, but cannabis has dozens more compounds which could be harnessed to treat many different conditions.”
“This is great news for many patients who have long sought legal access to both New Zealand-grown and made medicinal cannabis products,” says Carmen Doran, chief executive of Helius Therapeutics. Seeking to export to Europe and South America, Doran highlighted that Helius is now actively seeking investment to accelerate its domestic and international growth plans.

“Gaining approval of medicinal cannabis products that are truly New Zealand-grown and made is a significant milestone for our industry and another first for Helius. Local patients and their advocates have fought long and hard for truly Kiwi products which are both high quality and cost-effective,” she added.

Following the change in legislations about medicinal cannabis which took place in recent years and the fact that finally Kiwi companies have been able to start manufacturing the products locally, the over 3,500 practising pharmacists in New Zealand were asked to urgently familiarize themselves with the compound.

New Zealand’s medicinal cannabis scheme

The final details pertaining to the local Medicinal Cannabis Scheme were announced towards the end of 2019, and since then Kiwi officials have been striving to ensure that research and development licence-holders are well equipped to take the next steps. These include applying for commercial cultivation and manufacturing licences, so that local companies are able to start production.

Finally launched on April 1st 2020, the scheme is believed to be having a significant impact on the many patients benefiting from the medicinal compound. Moreover, it will expand the country’s economy via exporting opportunities and the multiple industries involved in sales and production, adding to the country’s GDP. The initiative is operating via GMP (Good Manufacturing Practice) standards, which will ensure the quality and consistency of cannabinoid-based medicines. This serves to assure medical practitioners that they are prescribing safe and high quality products.

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