MCIA releases roadmap to growth for the Australian medicinal cannabis industry

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Medicinal Cannabis Industry Australia (MCIA) has released a roadmap it hopes will provide the vision and way forward for the sector's growth in Australia.

The association said the paper has been drawn from a larger piece of research it undertook for the Victorian Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions (DJPR). That research reviewed the impact of the state’s Medicinal Cannabis Industry Development Plan (IDP).

The IDP review included consultation with thirty stakeholders including licensed companies, R&D organisations, medical groups and prescribers, patient advocate groups and the government.

MCIA said its roadmap draws on stakeholder perspectives of how the medicinal cannabis landscape has changed over the past five years, as well as the opportunities and challenges for the industry. It also captures insights on the current and future needs of the industry to inform policy and investment decisions to support the industry's growth.

MCIA chair Peter Crock said, “This report provides a great resource for the industry and will assist MCIA engagement around opportunities and challenges with state and federal Governments, the healthcare sector, industry stakeholders, and across the medicinal cannabis ecosystem. It will help inform the industry's strategic planning and importantly identifies the strategic levers that will drive growth.”

“The industry requires a 'patient first' focus," said Mr Crock, “A demand-led approach requires improved patient access and developing export capabilities, but also importantly addressing the regulatory barriers for companies, healthcare professionals, researchers and patients to expand access, improve affordability and drive industry growth”.

“The recent reforms to ensure that all products meet GMP standards, along with ODC reforms to licences and permits, are critical steps to assist in delivering improved access for patients to Australian products, underpinned by Australian quality, in a timely and affordable manner,” said Mr Crock. “It is critical that, as an industry, we provide the stewardship and evidential support to see medicinal cannabis become part of mainstream healthcare options available to patients.”