Frequently Asked Questions
Here’s a shortlist of the most questions we receive:
Yes, it is. The legislation changed in 2016 providing for GPs to prescribe via the TGA’s Special
Access Schemes (SAS). Unlike Canada, medicinal cannabis is only available on prescription
via the Australian community pharmacy system.
The recognised term to be used is medical (or medicinal) cannabis as mandated by the TGA
and ODC, not the term marijuana, weed, pot etc. It is not available as a smoked form.
The TGA originally approved the use of medicinal cannabis for the following conditions:
- Pain conditions – chronic pain, neuropathic pain, cancer pain
- Anxiety and Depression
- Sleep disorders including insomnia
- Spasms of Multiple Sclerosis
- Palliative care
However, many conditions are being approved but this will be a matter to be discussed with our qualified doctor.
The Cannabis or Marijuana plant has over 500 different chemicals, 120 of which have active effects with the body. The two main chemicals, Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD) are being studied extensively and proven to help with a variety of medical conditions, being similar to what the body produces itself to control pain, appetite, memory and movement. There is now a considerable amount of evidence which is now accessible
on many websites and search engines, such as Google Scholar, showing medicinal cannabis being helpful in reducing anxiety, reducing inflammation and relieving pain, controlling nausea associated with chemotherapy, kill cancer cells and slow down tumour growth, relax tight muscles in people with MS as well as stimulate appetite and help improve weight gain in people with cancer and AIDS.
We have streamlined the process to make this easy and straightforward. You simply fill out the online application form, upload your supportive medical information and let us do the rest. You will be contacted by one of our friendly and knowledgeable registered nurses who will review your medical condition and circumstances; your information will be then forwarded to one of our doctors who will contact you via video. The doctor will review your file, confirm your medical needs and complete the TGA application. Once completed, you can expect to have your prescriptions issued following your approval by TGA. Once you are authorised and taking your medications, you will be supported by our nurses every 6 weeks or so as part of the government requirements.
Our upfront fee provides your initial consult with the nurse. Your Telehealth appointment with our Medical Practitioner, a follow up appointment with the nurse three weeks later and a follow up consult with the doctor at three months.
Every case is evaluated on a case-by-case basis. Timelines can vary by state and by the complexity of the condition being applied for.
Once you have completed your online consultation with one of our medical doctors and your application approved by the TGA you will be able to access your products from an authorised pharmacy or medicinal cannabis dispensary. Note that our subscription does not include the cost of your products.
Depending on your particular circumstances, you may be given repeat prescriptions to keep your doctor visits to a minimum.
The price of our products varies between the different forms. Pricing information is available
from your doctor or pharmacist. Pricing depends on your condition, as dosage varies
significantly. Everyone’s endocannabinoid system is different; therefore, some patients
require smaller doses than others with the same condition.
There are many Cannabis products available now that are approved for medical purposes. These consist of the dried leaf, as well as oils and pills. The leaf is best ‘smoked’ with a TGA approved vaporiser (Mighty Medic) which does not burn the many essential ingredients and provides the maximum therapeutic effect. Oils are usually best applied under the tongue.
Once you have been authorised and prescribed the medicinal cannabis products, it is a government recommendation that you are supported by our doctors and nurses every 6 weeks or so. A phone or video appointment will be scheduled for you at regular intervals so as to check how you are progressing and whether any of your prescriptions need modifying. The cost for this is included in your upfront application fee. There are no further hidden or added costs.
At the Australian Institute of Medicinal Cannabis, we pride ourselves on offering a ‘full service’ with no extra or hidden fees. The one cost of $580 covers your application process, consultations with our nurses, doctors as well as the support and any change of prescriptions for the first year. Other than your medications, there is no more to pay! You will also receive a photo ID card with your prescription details and certificate of authorisation. After the first year, the ongoing fee is $480 per year, covering all your consultations and prescriptions for that period.
The TGA ensures that the manufacture and prescription of medical grade cannabis products is kept to a high standard and consistent quality. It is imperative that people seeking help for many often serious conditions can rely on high quality, contamination-free medications.
Medicare does not cover Telehealth (Video) consultations right now. You should ask your health fund if they cover any of the costs associated with the products. There is a wide variability between different funds as well as different policies with each fund.
As with all side effects, it depends on the person and the amount they have taken. But in general, side effects may include dizziness, dry mouth, bloodshot eyes and low blood pressure. Because cannabis can impair judgment and physical coordination, it is best that you do not drive, nor operate machinery whilst taking products contain THC.
Check your eligibility today
If you are suffering from a chronic medical condition, you may be eligible for plant-based treatment.