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Panama approves cannabis for medical purposes



Photo: DR |

Panamanian President Laurentino Cortizo recently passed a law regulating the use of cannabis for medicinal purposes in Panama, making this country the first in Central America to do so. The new law creates a regulatory framework that allows the use and controlled access to medical cannabis and its derivatives for therapeutic, medical and veterinary purposes, in addition to making it available to scientists and research in the national territory.

The law had been under discussion in Parliament for five years and was finally approved by the legislator at the end of August, having now been ratified by President Laurentino Cortizo.

The approval of the new regulations makes Panama the first country in Central America to establish the legal framework for the medical use of cannabis in patients with chronic diseases. The law will enter into force as soon as it is published in the Diário da República.

Several State institutions, the judiciary, patient associations and non-profits actively participated in the discussion of the proposal, which creates a National Program for the Study and Medicinal Use of Cannabis and its Derivatives, an entity that will ensure the needs of patients and the proper use of the plant.

Among other aspects, the law regulates the processes of commercialization, distribution, final disposal, use of duly authorized seeds for the cultivation of the cannabis plant, as well as medicinal cannabis derivatives for medical, therapeutic, veterinary, scientific and research purposes.

Several Latin American countries have already approved the medicinal use of cannabis, including Colombia, Chile, Ecuador, Peru and Costa Rica.


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