Medical cannabis supplies in New Zealand have run out, according to a medicinal marijuana advocacy group.
Medical Cannabis Awareness New Zealand (MCANZ) – a registered charity – says patients who have battled to get a prescription are now struggling to fill it.
MCANZ claims two of the main cannabidiol (CBD) products generally available in New Zealand are out of stock.
Neither of the products are expected to have stock until the end of November at the earliest, the group claims. These products are from different sources, with both Swiss and Canadian products affected.
MCANZ blames global shortages affecting the international supply of medical cannabis and added that it is particularly difficult for some patients who have been through a protracted procedure to obtain a prescription for medicinal cannabis, only to be defeated by a lack of supplies.
Kerri King, who suffers fibromyalgia and gastroparesis, said: “There is nothing more frustrating than jumping through all the hoops of finding a doctor who is educated enough on medical cannabis to prescribe, to then finally have a prescription but no stock available.
“It is upsetting and exhausting.”
MCANZ Spokesperson Mark Crotty said: “MCANZ has also received notice from several distressed patients that stocks are out of unaffected products, with pharmacists clearly confusing entire brands with a single product line.
“This highlights a real need for education at pharmacist level to ensure they understand what the different product ranges, are, an issue caused primarily by the ‘unconsented’ status of these products, which currently preclude any unsolicited advertising of these products.
“The anticipated changes in the new scheme can’t come soon enough for patients.”