Updated on January 30, 2019. Medical content reviewed by Dr. Richard Koffler, MD, Board Certified Physiatrist
Rather than designing a medical marijuana program exclusive to patients, Austria’s medical cannabis laws are incorporated into their general health policies. Patients seeking medical marijuana of any sort should consult with a doctor first, even though cannabis products are decriminalized for public use.
In many countries where medical cannabis is legal, patients receive a medical marijuana card that grants them certified access to the therapeutic cannabis they need. In Austria, however, the national health ministry is responsible for providing medical marijuana to qualified patients. Although an official card does not exist, a doctor recommendation can assist individuals with locating the medicine they need.
But because the laws surrounding marijuana are reasonably new, it’s essential for patients to have the means necessary to prove their cannabis is for medical purposes. Civilians are pushing for an official government program that reduces the likelihood of mistaken legal repercussions.
Since there is no specific medical marijuana card requirement for users, you don’t have to apply for one in Austria. Rather, the nation requires patients to ask a certified or trained physician for a prescription detailing their condition and need for medical cannabis.
Although the 2008 law granted medical marijuana access to qualifying patients, there has yet to be a government-grown or sanctioned facility or program that makes it easier for patients to access cannabis. For this reason, it’s likely that Austria will implement a more defined process for becoming a medical marijuana patient and receiving the treatment necessary in the future.
If you’re experiencing any discomfort, pain or health issues that cause symptoms cannabis could potentially alleviate, be sure to ask your doctor for a prescription. If your physician refuses, consider seeking a second opinion.
Unlike other countries or nations with a certified medical marijuana program, the lack of official organizations requiring membership grants all citizens the authority to maintain their treatment plan at their own discretion. Any individual using marijuana for medical purposes should remain in contact with their general physician or doctor for the best results.
Remember to speak with your healthcare professional about the treatment plan that best suits you. Voice any side effects or worries you may have, and always investigate the proper dosage for your medical conditions. It’s essential to know what works best for you while assisting your doctor with finding the correct medication for your diagnosis.
Whenever you switch doctors, request that your medical records transfer with you to keep all future physicians up-to-date on your health and prescription drugs. As with any other medication, patients are not permitted to share, sell or transfer their medical marijuana to another patient for any reason.
In Austria, all licensed doctors are lawfully allowed to prescribe medical marijuana to patients with qualifying conditions. Although cannabis use is decriminalized in the country in small amounts, it’s still essential to consult with a trained physician for further details before seeking marijuana treatment.
Medical professionals have improved access to research records and general information surrounding cannabis use, so they are better qualified to assess whether marijuana is the best option for specific patients. If you have any doubts or inquiries regarding cannabis use for medical purposes, be sure to consult with a certified physician first.
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