Medicine Man Technologies is pleased to report that a medical marijuana bill in Peru has been approved, and implementation should take place by the end of 2017. After being introduced over the summer and subjected to a quite a bit of debate, the bill to legalize cultivation, sale and patient use was overwhelmingly passed by the Peruvian Congress. The final vote included 67 favorable votes and just 5 dissenting votes, indicating a strong backing from all political parties.
Legislative Bill 1393 must now be approved by Peru’s President, Pedro Pablo Kuczynski, who actually proposed medical marijuana legalization after a highly publicized and protested police raid on a group known as Buscando Esperanza. The organization was a group of mothers who began cultivating and producing cannabis oils in a makeshift laboratory to alleviate various symptoms of their children’s illnesses such as epilepsy, tuberous sclerosis, seizures and more.
Once approved by President Kuczynski, Peru will join Chile, Argentina, Columbia in providing legalized medical marijuana. Another Latin American country, Uruguay, legalized the cultivation and sale of cannabis back in 2013.
What’s Next for the Medical Marijuana Bill in Peru
With its passing on October 19th, the bill will now be implemented by the Peruvian government. The current strategy is for the creation of a confidential patient registry to be managed by the Ministry of Health. Doctors will also be able to provide information on illnesses and dosage recommendations.
During the provided 60 days, further infrastructure will also be developed. Currently, licensing for the cultivation and production of medical marijuana will be overseen by a regulatory committee made up of the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Agriculture, National Commission for Development and Life Without Drugs (DEVIDA), and a panel of cannabis experts. For research purposes, government permits will also be required. No details have been released regarding medical marijuana sales at this point.
While a list of illnesses to be covered by the medical marijuana bill in Peru has not been released, it will likely cover many of the common ailments seen in similar legislation: epilepsy and seizure disorders, Parkinson’s Disease, cancer, terminal illnesses and chronic pain.
Cultivation, Importing and Affordability Concerns
While the impetus for legalizing medical marijuana was the mother’s group, Buscando Esperanza, the bill as it stands only includes imports along with highly controlled, local cultivation and production. This means that the group, and others like it, will not be allowed to continue producing cannabis oils, which could mean higher prices that put vital medication out of reach for some patients.
Ana Alvarez, founder of Buscando Esperanza, contends that her patient organization can produce oils efficiently and at a price that makes it accessible to all those who need it. She also points to the group’s ability to produce the needed strains for specific ailments. Alvarez hopes the Peruvian government will revisit the matter as infrastructure is developed in the coming weeks and allow for self-cultivation.
Now that a medical marijuana bill in Peru has been approved, Medicine Man Technologies will be keeping an eye out as their regulatory system takes shape. We hope that all patients who are in need will have safe, affordable access to the medication they require, and we look forward to seeing marijuana reform continue its momentum beyond the borders of the United States.
No matter where you are in the world, the team at Medicine Man Technologies is available to assist all individuals and enterprises looking to enter the market. We offer private consultations, assist with legal cannabis cultivation, offer operations training and much more.