Mônica Bergamo: Deputies vote on bill that obliges the state of SP to provide cannabidiol-based medicines

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Alesp (São Paulo Legislative Assembly) will put to a vote on Wednesday (24) the PL 1180 / 2019, which institutes the state policy for the free supply of drugs formulated with cannabidiol derivatives in public and private health units associated with the SUS (Single System of health).

The project has just been approved by the House Constitution and Justice Committee by 20 votes in favor and 11 against. If approved in plenary, the text goes to the sanction of Governor João Doria (PSDB-SP).

The PL is authored by deputy Caio França (PSB), Erica Malunguinho (PSOL), Marina Helou (Network) and Patricia Bezerra (PSDB).

During the vote at Alesp’s CCJ, Deputy Helou said that her mother, who has been treating cancer for 17 years now in metastasis, uses cannabidiol-based medication to relieve the pain.

“There is no more treatment and she just manages her quality of life. With cannabidiol she had a significant improvement in this sense of quality of life. Unfortunately, it is still a very expensive drug and needs to be legalized to be acquired”, he said. “We have the chance, right now, here at Alesp, to facilitate access to these medications and improve the quality of life of so many other people.”

Since 2015, Anvisa has allowed the import of cannabis-derived drugs on a case-by-case basis. Between 2015 and September 2021, authorization requests increased from 850 to 33,793 by November 11th.

Because they are imported, the price of medicines is very high, which leads citizens to go to court asking the SUS to bear the costs of treatment. A survey by the São Paulo State Department of Health shows that until mid-November there were 154 lawsuits ordering the São Paulo government to offer these products. In 2019, there were 122 demands and, last year, 158. Per year, the average public expenditure was R$ 4 million.

with MOSQUE LEG, VICTORIA AZEVEDO, BIANKA VIEIRA e MANOELLA SMITH

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