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'Doctors don’t want to prescribe it’ claims Territory MLA. Patient cost is about $3300 a month.

August 12, 2019

Jeff Collins wants it to be easier for Territorains to get the scripts. (Photo by Lauren DeCicca/Getty Images)
 

NO-ONE in the Territory has been prescribed medicinal cannabis or filled a prescription for the drug in the NT, shows new figures.

 

According to NT Health Department data, no community pharmacies and hospital pharmacies in the Territory have records of the drug being prescribed.

 

A spokeswoman said individual patients may have seen interstate specialists or been prescribed medicinal cannabis as part of medical trials, but the NT Health Department had no record of it.

Independent MLA Jeff Collins said red tape and high prices were stopping people from getting the drug.

“I’ve had constituents come in and tell me about the problems they’ve had simply finding someone to prescribe medical cannabis — doctors don’t want to prescribe it,” he said.

 

“The cost is about $3300 a month.

 

“Most of these people are suffering from chronic pain, which is likely affecting their ability to work — how the hell are they going to come up with $3000 a month?”

 

Mr Collins is calling on NT Health Minister Natasha Fyles to put medical cannabis on the agenda at the next COAG health meeting.

 

“The health ministers meet regularly, someone should be putting it on the agenda,” he said. “It’s legal everywhere, but nobody is taking the next step.

 

“We should be getting on the front foot here.”

 

However, NT Health Minister Natasha Fyles rejected the implication there was too much red tape preventing Territorians from accessing the treatment.

 

“We don’t have any barriers or red tape for doctors prescribing medicinal cannabis in the NT,” she said.

 

“There is no separate NT authorisation process to prescribe.

 

“There is no NT legislation restricting the access to medicines that contain cannabis.”

 

Ms Fyles said medical cannabis was on the Health COAG agenda last year.

 

Last year, Country Wellness Group clinical service manager Sam Keitaanpaa told the NT News people who self-medicated with marijuana bought illegally to avoid high prices.

Originally published here: https://www.ntnews.com.au/news/doctors-dont-want-to-prescribe-it-claims-territory-mla/news-story/588b1972c1550ec87008fb17d46a96b2?fbclid=IwAR2UQF9aeOJoYcJQZuHlwaUD20dXkMhM9FbSDGuGh_KAcW-CimgdLKuZTHc

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