Medical cannabis has, for the past few years, been in the limelight. It has mostly gained attention due to the medically prolific aspects of marijuana in the case of several critical illnesses. While the US has been on the front end of legalizing the drug, other countries have also taken part in the venture. Recently, it was Argentina that went on to legalize marijuana.
The final legislative was recently approved in Buenos Aires. The legislative in Argentina’s senate aimed to legalize marijuana and all the variants of it to be used for medicinal purposes. This was not all. The Senate also took measures in order to set a regulatory framework. The job of this framework will be to prescribe and/or distribute medical cannabis among the patients.
This was, according to many, a fairly good decision, especially keeping in view the issues faced in the United States for not regulating the drug right from the beginning. The senators approved this legislation last Wednesday. One of the best aspects of it is that there has also been a research program for medical marijuana set in place. This is to ensure the free access to cannabis oil as well as
MMJ’s other derivatives. However, this free access to medical marijuana will only be for those who join this MMJ research program.
Valeria Salech—President Mama Cultiva Argentina—stated in an interview that “the big things always come in small steps”. Mama Cultiva Argentina is a private MMJ group. The group mainly advocates the use of medical cannabis, stating that it has the potential to better the ruined quality of life, especially for children who suffer from critical illnesses.
Valeria Salech does not plan to stop here. She, along with her group, plans on getting the permit for patients to grow medical cannabis privately. As things are moving at the moment, it is believed that patients and their families will soon get the right to grow cannabis on their own.
The new legislation passed by the Chamber of Deputies will authorize the government agencies to grow cannabis. This cannabis will not only be used for patients but for research purposes as well. Up till the point that the state starts producing its own cannabis derivatives, it has the permission to import. This apparently made the Drug Policy Alliance at Washington D.C. quite content. Hannah Hetzer, the Senior International Policy Manager at the Alliance said,
“This bill was long championed by families and patients whose suffering has been alleviated with medical marijuana, and it’s a relief they’ve finally been heard.”
She further expressed her thoughts saying,
“It’s heartening to see Argentina prioritizing accessibility by providing medical marijuana at no cost to patients,”
For now, growing cannabis privately on residential property is deemed illegal. Those that commit the crime are to be sentenced to jail for a maximum period of fifteen years. However, this 15-year punishment is only for those growing MMJ privately for commercial purposes. If caught growing cannabis for personal use, the person responsible will be subject to two years in prison at most.