Patients will be able to book, pay and undergo a virtual consultation with cannabinoid specialist doctors. The health-tech platform provides patients with information on legal medicinal cannabis, as well as doctors with both medicinal cannabis education and assistance in obtaining approvals to prescribe these products.
When making a booking, patients can pay upfront using a credit card or other popular payment methods. The Cannabis Clinics booking and consultation platform is accessible here.
Across many parts of the world, including South Africa, the landscape of medicinal cannabis is rapidly evolving and creating opportunities for doctors and patients to include registered cannabis products in their healthcare regimes. Medicinal cannabis products, which range from oil, sprays, capsules, vapes and dried flowers are widely used in the management of health conditions such as cancer symptoms, chronic pain management, epilepsy, palliative care and mental health issues such as anxiety and insomnia. Often best known for its efficacy in pain management, medicinal cannabis can also play a role in treatment when it comes to multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, endometriosis and arthritis.
However, finding a healthcare practitioner who is trained in medicinal cannabis use and can prescribe it, and accessing a pharmacist to fulfil that prescription can still be a challenging journey for patients.
Craig Ludwig, chief strategy officer at Cannabis Clinics explains, “We are very proud to be working alongside RecoMed to facilitate and optimise this direct patient-to-doctor consultation program throughout South Africa, via our platforms. It’s a significant step forward in helping to create access to medicinal cannabis products for patients who have previously been excluded from opting to include legal, high-quality medicinal cannabis in their healthcare and treatment regime.”
Currently, the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (Sahpra) of the Department of Health, must approve each patient’s application. The team at IntroCann (an associated company with Cannabis Clinics) apply to Sahpra for approval on behalf of the doctor and patients. Repeat prescriptions are allowed for up to six months. Sahpra approves prescriptions for 14 described conditions including chronic pain, neuropathic pain, chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting, epilepsy, multi sclerosis, endometriosis, fibromyalgia, arthritis, anxiety, and insomnia.
The partnership will leverage the telehealth consultations boomed brought on by the recent pandemic restrictions where patients experienced the convenience and ease of consulting with their health practitioners in the privacy and comfort of their own homes. This accelerated uptake of telehealth solutions is part of the ‘new normal’ in South Africa, and globally.
“The overarching goal is always the improvement of access to quality healthcare,” says Sheraan Amod, CEO of RecoMed. “We are pleased to join forces with Cannabis Clinics to expand the healthcare choices of South Africans and optimise their access to treatments that can help them better manage their health conditions. With the new 24/7 Cannabis Clinics booking platform, they will be able to easily find qualified medicinal cannabis practitioners, make bookings for telehealth or physical consultations, get reminders of their appointments, make secure online payments and arrange to either fill their prescription at any leading pharmacy or have their meds delivered directly to their home or office by Clicks Direct Medicines."