Fact Sheet: Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulations
On August 11, 2016, Health Canada announced the new Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulations (ACMPR). These new regulations will replace the Marihuana for Medical Purposes Regulations (MMPR) when they come into force on August 24, 2016, and are being implemented as a result of the Federal Court ruling in the case of Allard v. Canada. These new regulations will allow for reasonable access to cannabis for medical purposes for Canadians who have been authorized to use cannabis for medical purposes by their health care practitioner.
What has changed under the ACMPR?
The largest single change is the introduction of provisions that will allow Canadians who need access to cannabis for medical purposes to produce a limited amount of cannabis for their own medical purposes, or designate someone to produce it for them. Health Canada believes that the addition of these provisions enabling individuals to produce a limited amount of cannabis for their own medical purposes will provide for accessibility and affordability, and address the issue of reasonable access identified by the Federal Court.
What does this mean for health care practitioners?
The ACMPR do not change the role of health care practitioners in Canada in the administration of this program. Health care practitioners remain responsible for authorizing the use of cannabis for medical purposes. Updated guidance for health care practitioners can be found on Health Canada’s website that may aid in determining the proper daily amount/dose for patients requiring cannabis for medical purposes. Several provincial health care regulatory authorities and the College of Family Physicians of Canada have also issued guidelines or guidance for health care practitioners.
What does this mean for patients?
Individuals authorized to use cannabis for medical purposes by a health care practitioner will continue to have the option of purchasing safe, quality-controlled cannabis from one of the 34 producers licensed by Health Canada. They will also have the option of producing a limited amount of cannabis for their own medical purposes, or designating someone to produce it for them.
With the appropriate medical document from their health care practitioner, individuals can apply to register with Health Canada to produce a limited amount of cannabis for their own medical purposes or to designate someone to produce it for them.
With registration, individuals will be allowed to produce a limited number of plants based on a formula that takes into account the individual’s daily dose (i.e. quantity authorized by their physician) and the average yield of a plant under certain growing conditions, such as indoor or outdoor growing.
Individuals who were previously authorized to possess and/or produce marijuana under the former Marihuana Medical Access Regulations and who meet the terms of the Federal Court injunction order may continue to do so until the Court orders otherwise. Individuals covered by the injunction who wish to change the terms of their license, such as a change in address or designated producer, will be able to do so by registering with Health Canada under the new regulations.
Additional information on how to register, including forms, will be available on Health Canada’s website on August 24. If you have any questions, please visit the Health Canada website or call toll-free at 1-866-337-7705 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
What does this mean for Licensed Producers (LP)?
The 34 Licensed Producers across Canada, which are currently supplying close to 70,000 Canadians, are expected to continue to be the main source of safe, quality-controlled cannabis for medical purposes. In addition to continuing to provide access to dried or fresh marijuana or cannabis oil, these licensed producers will now also be the only legal source of starting materials (seeds or plants) and interim supply to individuals who are registered with Health Canada to produce or who have designated someone to produce for them, a limited amount of cannabis for their own medical purposes.
Do the regulations allow storefront operations?
No. Access to cannabis for medical purposes is only permitted under the terms and conditions set out in the regulations. Storefront operations selling marijuana, commonly known as “dispensaries” and “compassion clubs” are not authorized to sell cannabis for medical or any other purposes. These operations are illegally supplied, and provide products that are unregulated and may be unsafe. Illegal storefront distribution and sale of cannabis are subject to law enforcement action. The only legal commercial source of safe, quality-controlled cannabis for medical purposes in Canada is through purchase directly from one of the 34 producers licenced by Health Canada.
Is Health Canada contemplating other changes? What do these regulations mean in terms of the Government’s commitment to legalize, strictly regulate and restrict access to marijuana?
These regulations provide an immediate solution that is necessary to address the issue of reasonable access identified by the Federal Court within the six month deadline that the Court provided. These changes should not be interpreted as being the longer-term plan for the regulation of access to cannabis for medical purposes, which is presently being determined as part of the Government’s commitment to legalize, strictly regulate and restrict access to marijuana.
These new regulations will continue to be evaluated to ensure that individuals authorized to access cannabis for their own medical purposes have reasonable access. Health Canada is also committed to studying other models, including pharmacy distribution, to provide access to cannabis for medical purposes.
Latest PDF from John Conroy – July 10, 2016 – Judge Phelan’s Judgement
From John Conroy’s web site:
It is now July 10th, 2016, which means Canada has less than 2 months to go to meet the August 24, 2016 deadline (6 months from February 24th, 2016 when Phelan J. declared the MMPR to be unconstitutional and suspended that declaration for 6 months) to enable Canada to make constitutional Medical Marihuana Regulations that provide “reasonable access” in accordance with his decision.
Attached Is a Copy of the “Judgment” that contains the Order making the declaration and ordering its suspension and importantly ordering that the injunction of March 21, 2014 “remains in effect until this court orders otherwise.”
While it is unlikely that Canada will allow the MMPR to become unconstitutional, in effect, by doing nothing by the deadline due the consequences that this would have for all MMPR licensed producers and patients, they might seek an extension of the deadline, possibly based on their intention to commence the “legalization” process by the spring. We have not received such a request, and if we do we would not be inclined to agree unless, at a minimum, provision is made to enable existing patients, covered by the injunction, to move their sites to accommodate their current situations. Arguably, given that section 267 of the MMPR repealed the MMAR, that section would also be unconstitutional if the government does nothing and it may be that the MMAR would be back in force and it has provision for changes to licenses being able to be made, however this is an unlikely scenario.
While counsel has had the opportunity to have considerable discussion with Bill Blair MP and Parliamentary Sec. to the Minister of Justice primarily with respect to the “legalization” issue, counsel for Canada have declined, on instructions from their client, to sit down with counsel for the Plaintiffs to discuss the possible content of the proposed new medical regulations as a way to avoid or minimize further court proceedings on the question of whether or not they meet the test of “reasonable access” as defined and reflected in Phelan J’s judgment. We were told that they did not consider a meeting to be necessary at this tiime.
Consequently, whatever the Government of Canada promulgates by way of new regulations will have to be reviewed by counsel, and we will have to go back before Justice Phelan to review them and determine whether or not they provide “reasonable access” and what should occur to the extent that they do or don’t.
Importantly, the injunction order of Justice Manson of March 21, 2014 will remain in effect until Justice Phelan, “orders otherwise.”
We will be attempting to arrange to get back in front of Judge Phelan at an early time after we receive a draft of the new regulations.”
Then on the main webpage under Elliott please post that Canada has appealed that decision and I attach a copy of the notice of appeal to be posted. Also, I attach a copy of the decision in Neary Sask QB to be inserted above Elliott and together with the notice of appeal that Canada has just filed in that case. The heading above Neary should read “Sentencing for Cannabis Offenses when Legalization is Looming”.
BAD NEWS for Patients like ME:
British Columbia, Canada
Tuesday, May 3rd, 2016
ANOTHER REALLY rough day … We can’t live like this anymore!
“We await the new Medical Regulations on or before August 24, 2016, and if we don’t like them I guess we’ll be going back to court as the decision is still “until further order of the court”. Justice Phelan has declined to expand the injunction terms to cover all medically approved patients and he has declined to allow anyone to change their addresses of any sites pending the new regulations, which should provide for such.
He also refused to make any further declarations with respect to section 53 or the 150 gram a day limit”.
John Conroy QC
British Columbia, Canada
|If you were a member of the Marihuana Medical Access Program and received the November 2013 mailing, please register on our enhanced secure registration system, even if you have previously communicated with any of the lawyers or law firms listed at this site. Providing the information requested does not make you a client of the lawyers or law firms operating this site.
Registration now will assist in prosecuting the class action and assessing what damages were suffered by the class as a whole. Please re-visit the site often for updates and to keep your registration up-to-date.
For questions relating to the registration system, call toll-free 1.866.241.9914.
1. On November 19, 2013, Health Canada mailed letters to 41,514 clients of the Marihuana Medical Access Program across Canada to advise of changes to the Program commencing on April 1, 2014. The windowed envelope containing the letter explicitly identified the “Marihuana Medical Access Program” in the return address on the outside along with the name and address of the client recipient.
2. On Thursday, November 21, 2013, George Da Pont, deputy minister at Health Canada issued an apology on Health Canada’s website describing the mailing as an administrative error. The apology stated: “I have been advised that as the result of an administrative error the envelopes were labelled to indicate that they were sent by the Program. This is not standard Health Canada practice.” The apology went on to state: “We are in discussion with the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada.”
3. The law firms of Sutts, Strosberg LLP, Charney Lawyers, Branch MacMaster LLP and McInnes Cooper agreed to work together on the prosecution of a proposed class action commenced in November 2013 against the Government of Canada on behalf of all persons who were sent a letter from Health Canada in an envelope that referred explicitly to the “Marihuana Medical Access Program”. On October 23, 2014, the law firms filed a second amended statement of claim in the Federal Court of Canada.
4. The proposed representative plaintiffs in the class action are identified in the statement of claim by the pseudonyms “John Doe” and “Suzie Jones”.
5. In a decision released on February 25, 2014, the Federal Court of Canada granted the plaintiffs’ motion for an order protecting the identities of “John Doe” and “Suzie Jones” which was opposed by the Government of Canada. In most cases, parties to a legal action are required to name themselves and this information appears on the public record. The Court concluded that the plaintiffs’ privacy should be maintained because a denial of their anonymity in the action would result in disclosure of the very information they seek to protect and thereby exacerbate the damage and/or risk of harm already caused by Health Canada’s November 2013 mailing. The Government of Canada appealed the confidentiality order. On July 24, 2014, the Federal Court of Canada released its decision dismissing the Government of Canada’s appeal.
6. On October 23, 2014, the plaintiffs served and filed a motion record seeking an order certifying the lawsuit as a class action. The motion was heard on June 11 and 12, 2015.
7. On November 24, 2014, the Government of Canada filed a motion record for an order striking portions of the affidavit of David Robins, co-counsel for the plaintiffs, filed in support of the plaintiffs’ motion for certification. On December 4, 2014, the plaintiffs filed a responding motion record. In a decision released on February 24, 2015, the Court dismissed the Government of Canada’s motion.
8. On March 3, 2015, the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada (“OPC”) released a report of findings from its investigation into Health Canada’s November 2013 mailing. While the OPC initiated its own complaint, it also received 339 complaints from individuals who cited concerns about the impact of the privacy breach on their personal lives including loss of employment, reputational damage and personal safety. In the report, the OPC concluded that the complaints are well founded and that Health Canada violated the federal Privacy Act by referencing the Marihuana Medical Access Program on the envelope in combination with the name of the addressee. The OPC’s report was only delivered to each of the 339 complainants, but a copy of the report may be viewed here.
9. The OPC’s investigation is concluded. Affected individuals who were not among the 339 complainants do not need to file additional complaints to the OPC.
10. On July 27, 2015, the Federal Court of Canada released its order and reasons granting the plaintiffs’ motion for certification of the action as a class proceeding. A copy of the order and reasons may be viewed here.
11. The Class is defined as: “All persons who were sent a letter from Health Canada in November 2013 that had the phrase ‘Marihuana Medical Access Program’ or ‘Programme d’acces a la marihuana a des fins medicales’ visible on the front of the envelope.”
12. On August 6, 2015, the Government of Canada filed a notice of appeal of the July 27, 2015 certification order. The appeal was heard in the Federal Court of Appeal on April 5, 2016 and the Court reserved its judgment. We look forward to receiving the court’s decision, which could take several months. A further update will be following receipt of the decision.
13. If the class action is successful, Class Members who received the November 2013 letter from Health Canada in an envelope that referenced the “Marihuana Medical Access Program” may be entitled to compensation for the breach of their privacy, damages for emotional distress/inconvenience, and/or compensation for out of pocket expenses.
14. Anyone who received the letter should register on our enhanced secure registration system, even if they have previously communicated with any of the lawyers or law firms listed at this site. Registration on the system will assist counsel in prosecuting the class action and assessing what damages were suffered by the class as a whole.
15. Anyone who has questions or encounters difficulty with the registration system may contact us toll-free at 1.866.241.9914.
16. Please revisit the site often for updates and to keep your registration up-to-date. We will continue to update this website as developments occur.
17. If you would like to know more about how a class action works, please click here.
From site – Copyright © 2016, SUTTS STROSBERG, LLP
CANNABIS PATIENTS CAN CONTINUE TO GROW!
ALLARD DECISION WE WON!
Federal Court strikes down ban on
Medical Marijuana Patients growing own pot
IMPORTANT INJUNCTION INFORMATION!
John Conroy – November Update, 2015 …
( CLICK HERE )
Much more Cannabis related Information on Alison Myrden and other
Patients can be found at The Medical Marijuana Mission …
( CLICK HERE )
IMPORTANT INJUNCTION INFORMATION!
John Conroy – July 15, 2015 … Regretfully Phelan J. dismissed our motion to vary the injunction and
a copy of the Order can be reviewed at this link.
( CLICK to DOWNLOAD )
I am and expect all of you will also be very disappointed in the ruling as he does not expressly address the ability to change production or other addresses due to unforeseen circumstances and does not set out fully what happened and I obviously failed to persuade him as to the facts and circumstances warranting an ability on the part of approved patients to make changes pending the final decision.
While this decision is probably subject to appeal, at present I believe the best course is to finish the submissions on the relevance and impact of Smith this month and await the court’s final decision which will hopefully come soon in the fall.
YOU STILL CANNOT MAKE ANY CHANGES TO YOUR MMAR LICENCES, INCLUDING CHANGING SITES OR ADDRESSES COVERED BY THE INJUNCTION UNLESS AND UNTIL FURTHER ORDER OF THE COURT.
WATCH Alison Speak at London Funraiser along with
Michael Puff Dog Thomas … Justin Loizos … NDP of London
OTTAWA – OWEN SMITH’s SUPREME COURT EXRACTS CASE DECSION!
Supreme Court Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
( CLICK HERE )
OTTAWA – OWEN SMITH’s SUPREME COURT EXRACTS CASE
Friday March 20, 2015
Supreme Court Ottawa, Ontario, Canada … 9:00 AM
Visit the Gallery to see how it went
Watch OWEN SMITH’s Court Case on
CPAC – the Cable Public Affairs Channel
OWEN SMITH’s Court Case – Cannabis Extracts PDF