Demonstrators waited outside Congress in Buenos Aires Argentina. They wanted the Senate to pass a bill in which Argentina legalizes medical cannabis. They weren’t disappointed!
Reuters reported on medicinal cannabis becoming legal in Argentina this week. The Senate finally gave legislative consent to legalizing medicinal cannabis oil, and permitted the federal government to produce cannabis for research and therapeutic use.
Go-ahead awaits president’s signature
The measure will become law once President Mauricio Macri has signed it. His Cambiemos party sponsored the bill.
Posters carried by demonstrators showed a little girl named Nayra with a headline saying ‘Medical cannabis – the pain can’t wait.’ She is a typical child to whom medicinal cannabis makes the difference between life and death. She suffers from refractory partial epilepsy. She has been treated with medicinal cannabis for the last two years.
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24 years later, Argentina legalizes medical Cannabis
Dr. Ana María García Nicora, heading the Medical Cannabis group of Argentina (CAMEDA), said 30% of epilepsy patients don’t respond to the medication prescribed to them. Her own daughter has suffered from epilepsy for 24 years, and now medical cannabis is an option for her.
Dr. Nicora said medical cannabis is an emergency. There is a great need for patients with many pathologies that do not respond to the standard medication. She said there are researchers in Argentina who are gathering to put their skills and knowledge base together, and there is no need to wait for the rest of the world to give them permission to do what they already know. Instead, when Argentina legalizes medical cannabis, it can contribute to the global research, and everyone can move forward together.
Education and assistance
Dr. Ana María García Nicora explained that she saw the role of CAMEDA as educating mothers. The organization is not there to dose or sell medical cannabis, but to go around and assist people, providing them with information when they ask for it.
A huge need, what is taking so long?
Dr. Nicora said she honestly feels her country is overflowing with despair. Here a father is in pain; a grandfather is in pain, the son has convulsions, a brother has cancer. It is just too much. There can be no more waiting. As a colleague of hers, Dr. Luis Bruno Blanch pointed out, it should have already been done. In other words, what is taking so long?
The rest of South America
Other countries in South America, Colombia, and Chile have also legalized medical use of marijuana while neighboring Uruguay legalized recreational use to keep cannabis business out of the hands of criminals.
Peru has a bill pending for approval of cannabis oil to be used as a medicine, and Brazil issued the first approval for the use of a cannabis spray used orally to treat multiple sclerosis. Now. Argentina legalizes medical cannabis. The wheels are turning, and slowly but surely, cannabis is being recognized as the medicine it has always been.