Harty, Michael

Thursday, 9 November 2017

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. Nbr.

Cannabis for Medicinal Use Regulation Bill 2016 Report: Motion [Private Members]

I will need 15 minutes.More Button

I move:More Button

Cannabis for Medicinal Use Regulation Bill 2016 Report: Motion [Private Members] (Continued)

Also in November 2016, the Minister for Health tasked the HPRA with producing a report on the subject of cannabinoids and their medicinal efficacy. That HPRA report, Cannabis for Medicinal Use - A...More Button

The Cannabis for Medicinal Use Regulation Bill 2016 was debated in the Dáil on Second Stage on 1 December 2016, after which it was referred to the health committee without a vote. The committee ...More Button

The committee held a second meeting on 13 April when it heard evidence from officials of the Department of Health, together with officeholders from the Pharmaceutical Society of Ireland, on their...More Button

Based on its consideration, the committee has determined that the Bill has technical issues and implementation difficulties, that it may have unintended policy consequences, including leakage of ...More Button

The purpose of the Bill is to make cannabis available as a medicinal product for individuals who receive certification from a registered doctor. To that end, it proposes the foundation of a cann...More Button

While the committee appreciates Deputy Gino Kenny's statement that his aim in sponsoring the Bill is to alleviate unnecessary suffering, aspects of the Bill cause it to be concerned that it may n...More Button

The committee is also concerned that the Bill's proposal to establish a cannabis regulatory authority to regulate cannabis would establish a parallel system of regulation, duplicating the functio...More Button

Advocates of the Bill state the HPRA is not willing to regulate cannabis. It is not possible, however, to regulate the whole-plant extract of the cannabis plant which has over 100 varieties and ...More Button

The Bill would allow a doctor to certify a person as having a condition that could be reasonably treated by cannabis without having to stipulate a dosage or a finite period for treatment. There ...More Button

A certificate is fundamentally different from a prescription. Evidence was given to the committee by the Bill's sponsor that a doctor's certification was to be used as evidence to protect the ho...More Button

Embedded in the cannabis plant are cannabinoids which act on the endocannabinoidal system in the human body and have medicinal properties. Whole-plant extract, however, also contains many other ...More Button

Although the Bill limits the maximum amount of cannabis to be sold per transaction as one ounce, the committee cannot identify any provision which limits the number of transactions. The committe...More Button

Normally medication is prescribed with reference to strength in milligrams and instructions are given on frequency and length of use. Such stipulations are not mentioned in the Bill.More Button

The sponsor of the Bill proposes that whole or full plant extract be made available in whatever form, including smoking cannabis, when used for medicinal purposes. The method of consumption woul...More Button

The committee also wishes to draw attention to the use of the word "consumer" rather than "patient" in the Bill to describe medicinal users of cannabis. The Bill's use of imperial measurements w...More Button

Although the committee has outlined a number of discrete problems in the drafting of the Bill, some of which may be more easily fixed through amendments than others, the underlying approach of th...More Button

The committee understands the Department will progress statutory instruments to advance the access programme. The committee views such an access programme as a more careful and desirable method ...More Button

Having received legal advice, the committee is satisfied that enacting the Bill as it stands would create legislative contradictions between the Bill and existing Acts. Resolving such contradictio...More Button

The committee understands that sections 42 and 43 of the Bill, as drafted, would legalise cannabis entirely, as the 1977 Act would cease to apply to cannabis. That seems to conflict with the int...More Button

The Bill may necessitate amendment to the Health Acts 1947 to 2015, the Pharmacopoeia Acts 1931 and 1977, the Poisons Acts 1961 and 1977 and the Pharmacy Acts 1875 to 1977, and other legislation,...More Button

The Bill's creation of offences without prescribing corresponding penalties conflicts with the 1977 Act which provides both offences and penalties. Sections 16, 18 and 19 of the Bill, respective...More Button

I am in a very difficult position, as I was when the debate was conducted on 1 December last year. At the time I saw fundamental flaws in the Bill and I was the only person in the Chamber that nig...More Button

It would appear today that is not the case and I find it very difficult to speak on a motion when those who did not dissent are now dissenting. Such is politics. I have learned much about politic...More Button

I believe the committee had fair hearings. I do not believe that anybody was badly treated at the committee. Many Members, who were not members of the committee, contributed. I do not accept t...More Button

It was the intention of the committee, and it is my intention as chair, to see medicinal cannabis products being available to patients. I met Ms Vera Twomey in the audiovisual, AV, room in June ...More Button

The Bill was very poorly worded. It is telling that many sections of the Bill were taken from the Luke 'Ming' Flanagan Bill of 2013, which proposed the introduction of recreational cannabis as w...More Button

Those were the flaws that I could see. The more one reads the Bill the more flaws become apparent. That was the substantial reason the committee did not recommend that this Bill should proceed....More Button

The study conducted by Mr. Mike Barnes was referenced widely in the Bill. One of the issues that the proposers of the Bill had was that the HPRA did not reference pain as an illness or a conditi...More Button

The content of this Bill relates to smoking cannabis, and that was the main objection the committee had on the Bill. Smoking cannabis has serious health effects. It can precipitate psychosis, p...More Button

I have to reiterate that the committee is committed to providing medicinal cannabis that is safe and effective and has data to back it up. We could not accept the Bill in the manner in which it ...More Button

I thank the Leas-Cheann Comhairle for the opportunity to contribute to this debate. I am standing alone on this side of the House again. It is a very uncomfortable position to be in. I hope pe...More Button

Public Sector Pay

Asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform: the measures he plans to put it place to unwind the Financial Emergency Measures in the Public Interest Act 2015 as applied to contract holders that are not part of the public service; and if he wi...More Button