Health Canada Allows Medical Cannabis Patients to Grow

Health Canada has revealed a new version of medical cannabis regulations related to the Allard case, which struck down the unconstitutional Marihuana for Medical Purposes Regulations (MMPR) due to concerns around inadequate access and home growing. The revised Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulations unveiled today are quite similar to the previous cannabis regulations.

The updated regulation now allows MMAR patients to grow at home or designate another grower to produce for them, some of whom are still able to do so under an injunction. However, industry experts are concerned that the revised regulations might still not be enough to address the needs of all medical cannabis patients, especially when it comes to taxation and cost-coverage. Founder and Executive Director of Canadians for Fair Access to Medical Marijuana (CFAMM), Jonathan Zaid, mentioned that “while the new regulations address patients’ ability to grow their own cannabis, the regulations fail to address the urgent issue of affordability for patients who are unable to do so.” It was highlighted that “time and time again the courts have ruled in favour of medical cannabis patients. It’s about time Health Canada and the government actively listen and address the concerns of patients instead of continuing along with the litigious environment we have seen to date.”

There is an increasing concern that despite the revisions, many patients will still be struggling with affordability and the modified regulatory system will not include measures to bolster cost-coverage and sales will still be unfairly subjected to HST.

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