Medicinal Cannabis is a private prescription-only medication. These products can only be prescribed by approved doctors and specialists, and in some states/territories prescriptions may be restricted to specific diagnosed health conditions.
There are a number of requirements that must be complied with before Medicinal Cannabis products can be prescribed and dispensed, depending on your state/territory legislation.
There are two layers of regulation for this prescription only medicine:
- At the Commonwealth level through the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA)
- At the relevant State/ Territory Government level.
While Commonwealth requirements apply to all prescribers and suppliers, State and Territory Governments have varied regulations as to who can prescribe Medicinal Cannabis.
This means there are several prerequisites that prescribers and pharmacies need to comply with before they can prescribe or dispense Medicinal Cannabis products; these requirements have been carefully considered to ensure that the products available meet an acceptable standard and that they are supplied in a way that is safe, secure and appropriate.
These regulations make it necessary for patients to make multiple trips to the pharmacy in order to access Medicinal Cannabis products.
Medicinal Cannabis is a private prescription only medicine, and costs depend on the strength of the product and the dosage form.
The MCMP provides access to a variety of Medicinal Cannabis products from multiple manufacturers. Specialists, Doctor and Pharmacies registered with the Medicinal Cannabis Medicines Portal can advise the products available and the cost of those medicines. By law, the list of registered doctors and pharmacies who have agreed to prescribe and dispense the medicinal cannabis facilitated by the portal can’t be displayed to the public. A Special Interest Group Pharmacy or Doctor should be able to assist you with this information.
All Medicinal Cannabis products available through the MCMP can be accessed at MCMP Network Pharmacies with the added security of a maximum price to patients. That pharmacist will be able to confirm the price for you, and your doctor will also be able to advise the maximum price for the appropriate medication during your consultation.
Medicinal Cannabis is a highly specialised medication and will not be suitable for everyone. Some State/ Territory legislation limits the ability to prescribe Medicinal Cannabis to certain types of doctor or specialist, and may also contain specific criteria relating to the types of patients that can access Medicinal Cannabis. If you are interested in discussing Medicinal Cannabis as a treatment option, you should speak with your usual doctor.
Due to the novel and unconventional nature of Medicinal Cannabis, many healthcare professionals are interested in observing how this new treatment option integrates into the Australian healthcare system, even if they do not expect to prescribe it.
The ‘Medicinal Cannabis Special Interest Group for Doctors’ Locator details prescribers who have expressed an interest in the topic of Medicinal Cannabis, and are happy for their details to be made available to the public.
Please note: appearance on this list does not guarantee the doctor will be able to prescribe Medicinal Cannabis, or deem it appropriate for your individual circumstances.
MCMP Network Pharmacies will be able to dispense the Medicinal Cannabis from manufacturers listed on this portal. These pharmacies have also agreed that they will charge no more than a set maximum price per Medicinal Cannabis product; your pharmacist will be able to confirm the price for you, and your doctor will also be able to advise the maximum price for the appropriate medication during your consultation.
Please remember that due to Commonwealth and State restrictions, pharmacies cannot have Medicinal Cannabis products stored on the premises; these products must be ordered in specifically for each patient. This means they cannot hold stock in the pharmacy for the general public.
After the pharmacist has seen the script and all accompanying approvals, the patient, or their carer, will need to pay for the Medicinal Cannabis product. The pharmacist will then be able to order the item from the approved wholesaler.
This means that patients will need to make a second trip to the pharmacy to collect their medication. Your pharmacist will be able to give you guidance on the expected arrival time for the medication, and how you will be notified.
The ‘Medicinal Cannabis Special Interest Group for Pharmacies’ Locator details community pharmacies who have expressed an interest in the topic of Medicinal Cannabis, and are happy for their details to be made available to the public. They should be able to assist you to access medicinal cannabis subject to prior compliance with regulatory requirements and the issue of a valid prescription from an appropriate health professional.
Please note: appearance on this list does not guarantee the pharmacy will be able to dispense Medicinal Cannabis, or deem it appropriate for your individual circumstances.
The MCMP is an online portal that provides support to patients and healthcare professionals, relating to the prescription and dispensing of Medicinal Cannabis products.
There are significant Commonwealth and State / Territory requirements that doctors and pharmacists must comply with in order to provide Medicinal Cannabis products to patients; the MCMP ensures that all these requirements are met, and provides a fast-tracked pathway to access products, which will ensure you receive your medication as quickly as possible.
The MCMP also allows your doctor and pharmacist to work together to monitor your progress, which will help streamline the process to request repeats of your medication if appropriate.
If you are happy to use the MCMP, your healthcare professional will be able to register you. They will explain how your information will be used, and will update your details in the system. You will be asked to sign a consent form, which will explain how your information will be used in the MCMP. Upon successful registration you will be provided a Patient Leaflet which contains your unique Patient ID; please make sure you have this ID with you whenever you visit your doctor or nominated MCMP Network Pharmacy.
If you have any queries about Medicinal Cannabis, or if you have been prescribed Medicinal Cannabis and have questions about your medication, it is best to speak to your doctor or the dispensing pharmacist.
If you have any questions that relate to the MCMP you can email the MCMP Administration Team at firstname.lastname@example.org
The MCMP Administration Team can help with queries relating to the MCMP, such as updating your contact details, or helping you locate an MCMP Network Pharmacy.
Please note, the MCMP Administration Team cannot provide any clinical advice regarding Medicinal Cannabis products, or provide any updates relating to Commonwealth or State/Territory approvals.
Further information about access to Medicinal Cannabis can be found via the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) and local state/territory websites:
These links to external websites are not provided or maintained by, or in way affiliated with PharmaPrograms or Sinapse Pty Ltd. PharmaPrograms and Sinapse Pty Ltd do not guarantee the accuracy, relevance, timeliness or completeness of any information on these external websites.