Minister could approve CBD as interim medicine

The use of cannabis oil (CBD) for treating difficult to deal with medical problems like epilepsy and seizures has been highlighted again by Family’s desperate quest for cannabis oil.

Metiria Turei (@metiria) reacted to this story on Twitter:

The law is an ass.

() has pointed out:

The law doesn’t actually need changing. The minister right now could simply give approval… if he/she wishes.

They link to the legislation:

Medicines Act 1981

23 Minister may give provisional consent
  • (1) Notwithstanding sections 20 to 22, the Minister may, by notice in the Gazette, in accordance with this section, give his provisional consent to the sale or supply or use of a new medicine where he is of the opinion that it is desirable that the medicine be sold, supplied, or used on a restricted basis for the treatment of a limited number of patients.

    (2) An application for the Minister’s provisional consent under this section shall—

    • (a) be made in accordance with paragraphs (b) and (ca) of section 21(1):

    • (b) be addressed to the Director-General:

    • (c) state, or be accompanied by a statement of, the particulars specified in paragraphs (a) to (h) of section 21(2):

    • (d) be determined by the Minister in accordance with section 22.

    (3) On giving his provisional consent under this section, the Minister may impose—

    • (a) such conditions relating to the persons to whom the medicine may be sold or supplied; or

    • (b) such conditions relating to the area in which the medicine may be distributed; or

    • (c) such other conditions, not being inconsistent with the purposes of this section,—

    as he thinks fit.

    (4) Subject to subsections (4A) and (5), every provisional consent given under this section shall have effect for 2 years or such shorter period as the Minister may determine, and shall then expire.

    (4A) The Minister may, by notice in the Gazette, from time to time renew any provisional consent given under this section for a period not exceeding 2 years on any one occasion.

    (4B) Subsections (3) and (5) shall apply to any renewal of a provisional consent given under subsection (4A) as if it were a provisional consent given under subsection (1).

    (5) If, during the currency of a provisional consent given in respect of any medicine, the Minister grants a consent under section 20 in respect of the same medicine, the provisional consent shall be deemed to be revoked.


The Act says minister… but because of delegations this sits with @PeterDunneMP

Applications for Minister’s consent

  • (1) Every application for the Minister’s consent under section 20 shall—

    • (b) be made in the true name of the manufacturer or importer or proprietor, or the proposed manufacturer or importer or proprietor, in New Zealand of the medicine, by that person or by his duly authorised agent:

Leave a comment


  1. Section 8 of the ‘Misuse of Drugs act 1975’ (MODA) gives exemptions for doctors to prescribe the drugs in the schedule.. BUT I think there is confusion about Cannabis, being only under ministerial approval ??

    Also, Minister Dunne responded to my email, by saying that under the UN conventions, Cannabis is effectively banned (WRONG).. the opening preamble gives clear exemptions for ‘Medical & Scientific use’ & another clause exempts ‘Industrial uses’ BUT again, there is a misconception about this, under the ‘horror stories’ about the ‘Demon weed’ & ‘Reefer Msdness’ etc. 😦

    I welcome any reviews & change to this current nonsense.. as in other OECD countries

  2. The statement ‘the minister, may by notice in the gazette… use of a new medicine..’

    Cannabis is hardly a ‘NEW medicine’ it has been used for 1000s of years !

    I reaffirm, that methinks this minister is just ‘making excuses’ for his inaction on this 😦

    • Mike C

       /  1st June 2015

      @Zedd. The Minister would of course be required to consult with the Government Cabinet first.

      If Prime Minister John Key plays his cards right on this subject, then he will have the winning formula to win his 4th term 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: