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FX Medicine live at the 2019 UIC Australian Medicinal Cannabis Symposium - Day 3

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2019 heralds the third year of Australia’s Medicinal Cannabis Symposium yet patient access remains pitifully low.

The application process is burdensome, inconsistent and difficult to navigate. Government clinical guidance is narrow, politically motivated and designed to arrive at conclusions suiting outcomes other than the best interests of patients.

Thousands of sick Australians are still forced to rely on the illicit market to obtain what may very well be life-saving medicines while medicos remain confused about how and whether to prescribe. Many doctors even recommend their patients continue to use unregulated products rather than attempting the legal route – United In Compassion (UIC) views this as an unacceptable state of affairs. Meanwhile, research and acceptance around the world is exploding….

UIC seeks to bridge the information gap by once again promoting and showcasing global and domestic research and – importantly – placing patient issues and many would argue, human rights firmly back on the political, regulatory and clinical agendas.

2019 United In Compassion Medicinal Cannabis Symposium

Over 3 days hear from world experts as we grapple with the problems around patient access, guidelines and supply.

The FX Medicine LIVE team were pleased to attend the 2019 UIC Australian Medicinal Cannabis Symposium in Tweed Heads on 22-24 March 2019. Watch our interviews from Day One below.

See our interviews from Day One and Day Two.


FX MEDICINE LIVE: ANDREW SPEAKS TO Justin Sinclair

Justin Sinclair is a Research Fellow at the NICM Health Research Institute at Western Sydney University, where he also heads up the Australian Medicinal Cannabis Research and Education Collaboration. Since 2016, Justin has presented his research findings and educational material specific to cannabis at over 60 seminars across Australia and New Zealand, and has been actively involved in the training of medical practitioners in the safe and effective use of medicinal cannabis throughout Australia. His current research focus is investigating the use of medicinal cannabis for the symptomatic management of endometriosis.

ANDREW AND Justin DISCUSSED his research into the potential use of cannabinoids for endometriosis:

  • Using cannabis for the management of endometriosis 
  • The economic impact of chronic conditions
  • The potential of cannabis to be used as an exit drug for opioids 
  • The multi-focal effects of cannabis for endometriosis
  • Lobbying for the use of cannabis for chronic conditions
  • Is cannabis a medicine or a food?
  • The safety issues surrounding growing and dosing cannabis for home growers
  • How medicinal cannabis is often being used in the US and Canada 
  • Addressing the stigma of cannabis usage
  • The importance of education for healthcare professionals
  • Current Australian drug policy


FX MEDICINE LIVE: ANDREW SPEAKS TO Dr Teresa Nicoletti

Dr Teresa Nicoletti is a partner in Mills Oakley's Intellectual Property, Health and Life Sciences group. She is both a lawyer and PhD-qualified scientist with 25 years' experience in the health and life sciences sector. Teresa has gained particular prominence in Australia as the leading lawyer in the regulation of medicinal cannabis (Federal and State). She is also a board member of the Medicinal Cannabis Council.

ANDREW AND Teresa DISCUSSED THE legal aspects of cannabis:

  • How Teresa first came to be involved with medicinal cannabis
  • Teresa's role in assisting patients with legal access to medicinal cannabis
  • The evolution of medicinal cannabis access
  • State vs federal drug regulations
  • Exploring different drug listing categories for different cannabis products
  • Teresa's involvement in lobbying the government improve cannabis regulation


FX MEDICINE LIVE: ANDREW SPEAKS TO Dianah Walter

Dianah Walter is a regional advocate from South Australia who has been strongly campaigning for better access to cannabis for patients who want access to medicinal cannabis.

ANDREW AND Dianah discussed her role in patient advocacy:

  • The importance of a personal narrative
  • How to connect with and influence local members of parliament and senators
  • How to be "heard"
  • The importance of education for medical practitioners


FX MEDICINE LIVE: ANDREW SPEAKS TO DR Mark Ware

Dr Ware is the Chief Medical Officer for Canopy Growth Corporation and is responsible for the advancement of research and Canopy Growth’s global medical cannabis brand.

He is an Associate Professor in Family Medicine and Anesthesia at McGill University in Canada and over the past 10 years he has served as the Director of Clinical Research of the Alan Edwards Pain Management Unit at the McGill University Health Centre, and Executive Director of the non-profit Canadian Consortium for the Investigation of Cannabinoids.

Dr Ware continues to practice pain medicine at the McGill University Health Center and has acted as an advisor on medical cannabis policy to the Canadian government since 2001. He also served as Vice Chair of the Federal Task Force on the Legalization and Regulation of Cannabis in Canada in 2016 and is recognised globally as a leader in medical cannabis research.

ANDREW AND Mark DISCUSSED the opioid sparing effect CANNABIS:

  • Mark's medical background
  • Canada's cannabis industry
  • The legislative differences between Canada and Australia regarding medicinal cannabis
  • What has happened in Canada since the legalisation of cannabis for social/recreational use
  • What lessons can Australia learn from Canada regarding the evolving access of cannabis
  • The opioid sparing effect of cannabis
  • The need for better understanding of how best to use cannabis as an exit drug
  • Substance abuse - environmental effects vs drug effects 
  • The direction of future cannabis research in Canada
  • Safety issues concerning cannabis, now and in the future
  • Mark's advice to Australian legislators


FX MEDICINE LIVE: ANDREW SPEAKS TO Adam Miller

Adam Miller is the founder of BuddingTech and The Medical Cannabis Council of Australia. In 2015, Adam became involved in the medical cannabis space due to his passion for the medicine and belief in innovation stimulating its growth. In 2016, Adam founded BuddingTech, Australia’s first medical cannabis innovation coordination program. Adam also founded the Medical Cannabis Council, Australia's first national industry body to represent the medical cannabis industry in Australia. 

ANDREW AND Adam DISCUSSED medicinal cannabis: Australian Vs the global market:

  • How access to medicinal cannabis in Australia compares to the rest of the world
  • Comparing cannabis and alcohol
  • The white market vs the black market vs the compassionate market
  • Different cannabis products - www.leafly.com
  • The complexities of cannabis
  • The future of medicine and potentials for cannabis


FX MEDICINE LIVE: ANDREW SPEAKS TO Prof David Caldecott

Prof David Caldecott was the MC of the 2019 UIC Medicinal Cannabis Symposium.

David has worked as a specialist emergency physician for 25 years, is a senior university lecturer and adjunct associate professor. A founding member of the Australian Medical Cannabis Observatory; the AMCO was created to establish the infrastructure and support systems that an industry will require. He has authored of numerous publications with specialties in Novel Illicit Compounds in the ED, Simulation, Medical Education, Innovation in the Emergency Department, Medical Response to Terrorism and Disaster Medicine.

ANDREW AND David discussed the importance of providing quality education to medical practitioners:

  • David's clinical and academic background
  • The importance of education for medical practitioners
  • ANU's medicinal cannabis course
  • Why are medical practitioners nervous about prescribing cannabis?
  • What needs to change


FX MEDICINE LIVE: ANDREW SPEAKS TO Dr Janet Schloss

Dr Janet Schloss is a Clinical Nutritionist and Naturopath who has over 19 years of private practice. Janet works part time seeing patients and part time conducting research. She completed her PhD at the School of Medicine, The University of Queensland and continues to conduct research to help patients and practitioners to establish evidence based practice.  

ANDREW AND Janet DISCUSSED her current research:

  • Janet's research into using medicinal cannabis in the management of glioblastoma multiforma (GBM)
  • Choosing the correct cannabis for the trial
  • The recruitment phase of the GBM trial
  • Roadblocks and hurdles that the trial and subjects are facing
  • The importance of education for medical practitioners
  • Patient feedback from the GBM trial


FX MEDICINE LIVE: ANDREW SPEAKS TO Prof Iain McGregor

Prof Iain McGregor is the Academic Director of the Lambert Initiative and an NHMRC Principal Research Fellow. He is responsible for academic and organisational leadership, strategic direction, governance and reporting, and the development and achievement of the preclinical and clinical research strategies. Iain oversees a team of more than 25 staff and students, including the Associate Directors, and reports to the Lambert Initiative Internal Management Group (IMG). Renowned in the field of medicinal cannabis research, Iain leads strategic relations, advocacy and education.

ANDREW AND Iain DISCUSSED THE research into MEDICINAL CANNABIS:

  • The work of the Lambert Initiative and how it all started
  • The entourage effect
  • Using "the benefit of the doubt"
  • Safety issues and red flags
  • Target deconvolution of cannabinoids
  • The difference between an authorised prescriber and accessing SAS Category B
  • The importance of education for medical practitioners


FX MEDICINE LIVE: ANDREW SPEAKS TO Morgan Taylor

Morgan Taylor has suffered from Crohn's disease for the past 10 years.

Morgan Shared her patient story:

 


FX MEDICINE LIVE: ANDREW SPEAKS TO Andrew Kavasilas

Andrew is the Secretary of the Australian Hemp Party and founder of Medicinal Cannabis Limited.

ANDREW AND Andrew DISCUSSED changes in the cannabis industry:

  • What has changed in the last 2 years
  • Where does the major power sit to illicit change
  • Why don't we do the research here in Australia?
  • Addressing concerns about cannabis safety
  • Why do we, as Australians, want to "own" cannabis?
  • Growing conditions for cannabis


FX MEDICINE LIVE: ANDREW SPEAKS TO Dr Ethan Russo

Dr Ethan Russo, is a board-certified neurologist, psychopharmacology researcher. He is the Director of Research and Development at the International Cannabis and Cannabinoids Institute (ICCI) as well as former president of the International Cannabinoid Research Society and former Chairman of the International Association for Cannabinoid Medicines. He serves on the Scientific Advisory Board for the American Botanical Council. He is author/editor of seven books on cannabis and medicinal herbs, and has also published numerous book chapters, and over fifty articles in neurology, pain management, cannabis, and ethnobotany. He has consulted or lectured on these topics in 38 states and provinces and 33 countries.

ANDREW AND Ethan DISCUSSED THE patient access to cannabis:

  • The mission of the ICCI
  • Summary of Ethan's talks at the 2019 UIC Medicinal Cannabis Symposium
    • Making cannabis safer and better
    • The cannabis entourage
    • Cannabis in the future of neurology
  • New findings in the triggers/causes of Alzheimer's disease
  • The potential for cannabis use in Alzheimer's disease
  • The metabolism of cannabinoids and terpenoids in the liver
  • The potential for cannabis to be used in other neurological diseases


FX MEDICINE LIVE: ANDREW SPEAKS TO Dr Scott Smid

Dr Scott Smid is a pharmacologist working at The University of Adelaide specialising in drug discovery and development research both in industry and academia. He maintains a strong research interest in experimental therapeutics applied towards novel treatments for gastrointestinal and neurodegenerative diseases. This includes investigating the biological actions of phytocannabinoids, synthetic cannabinoids and endocannabinoids in areas as diverse as gut function, inflammation and neurodegeneration. Current interests include novel ligand development for binding and inhibiting pathological aggregating proteins such as beta-amyloid and alpha-synuclein, which are associated with Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease.

ANDREW AND Scott DISCUSSED potential uses of cannabis in gut health:

  • How cannabinoids can influence gut inflammation
  • Real world applications for cannabis - Morgan Taylor's case
  • Should we isolating cannabis actives or should we use the whole plant?
  • Difficulties faced by cannabis researchers 
  • The future of the cannabis industry
  • The timeline of cannabis drug discovery to patient use

 


FX MEDICINE LIVE: ANDREW SPEAKS TO Lucy Haslam

Lucy is the Executive Director and Co-founder of United in Compassion. She is a retired nurse, who previously founded a fully accredited in-home nursing care company which grew from a one-person operation to a staff of over 50 nursing and disability support workers and included a respite centre and administration centre caring for over 200 patients. Patients included low through to high support clients such as quadriplegics, acquired brain injury, physical and intellectual disabilities, frail aged and palliative care.

As of August 2013, Lucy has spearheaded the movement to re-introduce medicinal cannabis into Australia. Lucy witnessed the dramatic relief her son Dan (suffering stage 4 bowel cancer) gained from using medicinal cannabis, and Dan championed the cause alongside his Mother. Together they started a social campaign which ultimately changes Australian Laws. Lucy says that she used to feel proud of that achievement but now feels that Australian legislators have produced a system set up to fail patients like Dan. On Dan’s deathbed she promised to make access to cannabis better for Australians.

ANDREW AND Lucy wrap up the 2019 UIC Medicinal Cannabis Symposium:

  • The history of United in Compassion (UIC)
  • How Lucy and her husband changed their mindset about cannabis
  • The evolution of the cannabis use and the UIC Medicinal Cannabis Symposium from 2014 to today
  • The future of cannabis accessibility - the black market vs legal access
  • Calling out Australian politics
  • The history of medicinal cannabis use in Australia 
  • The importance of doctor education and patient safety


The FX Medicine Team would like to thank United in Compassion and the 2019 UIC Medicinal Cannabis Symposium for having us. 


DISCLAIMER: 

The information provided on FX Medicine is for educational and informational purposes only. The information provided on this site is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for professional advice or care. Please seek the advice of a qualified health care professional in the event something you have read here raises questions or concerns regarding your health.

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FX Medicine LIVE
FX Medicine LIVE brings you a virtual ticket into some of Australia’s leading complementary medicine conferences. Join us as we talk to the key note speakers, organisers and attendees live at these events throughout the year.