The Victorian Government has announced Australia’s first Medical Cannabis Industry Development Strategy

The Andrews Labor Government has urged the Federal Government to PBS list medicinal cannabis products.

“Victoria’s leadership has seen some of our sickest kids get the treatment they so desperately need,” says State Health Minister Jill Hennessy.

“We urge the Turnbull Government to move quickly so that this life changing product is affordable and in-reach for every Australian – not just those who can afford it.”

The state government also announced that it plans for Victoria to become the leader in exports of medicinal cannabis, and move the state’s emerging medicinal cannabis industry into an established sector.

The strategy sets a goal of having Victoria supply half of Australia’s medicinal cannabis by 2028.

While visiting Monash Medical Centre, Minister for Health Jill Hennessy and Minister for Agriculture Jaala Pulford also announced a significant expansion to Victoria’s early compassionate access scheme.

The imported medicinal cannabis product has been offered to 29 children with severe intractable epilepsy. This scheme will now be expanded to 60 of the state’s sickest children.

The Government also plans to offer Victoria’s locally produced product – when it is ready – to an additional 30 children, to provide further access to a total of 90 Victorian children.

Victoria’s scheme has already helped children see a reduction in seizures and has significantly improved their quality of life, the Government says.

While the Federal Government has introduced a national scheme to facilitate access for patients – Victorian Labor says it needs to now accelerate the PBS listing of medicinal cannabis products.