Brazil joins the procession of countries allowing the use of certain forms of cannabis-based treatments.
The National Health Surveillance Agency (Anvisa), the Brazilian government body in charge of authorizing new drugs, has just approved the medical use of cannabis byproducts.
The new regulation will be published in the official journal soon and will become a 90 law days later. Specific rules have also been established to produce, import, market, package and regulate these new products. The regulation will be revised in 3 years as these products are currently under study worldwide.
The sale of these cannabis-based treatments will be done exclusively in pharmacies and specialty stores.
Prescribing rules vary according to the THC level
When the products contain THC concentrations below 0,2%, the drug will be prescribed with a specific number. In addition, a new prescription will be required within 60 days.
However, those containing a concentration of THC greater than 0,2% will be prescribed only to terminally ill patients and to those who no longer have therapeutic alternatives.
Brazil does not yet put definitively on medical cannabis
Despite the authorization to market these products in Brazil and opening a new market, the country is still far from what can be observed elsewhere in South America, such as Uruguay, Colombia or Chile.
Authorizations granted by Anvisa for the import of products containing medicinal cannabis rose from nearly 900 in 2015 to more than 2700 this year. These data tripled in just four years. It is estimated that Brazil has a multi-million dollar commercial potential with a population of almost 210 million.