Updated on January 30, 2019. Medical content reviewed by Dr. Joseph Rosado, MD, M.B.A, Chief Medical Officer
Whether you’re a patient, caregiver or physician, it’s essential to review and recognize Denmark’s medical marijuana laws before beginning or prescribing any form of cannabis, from cannabis-based medicines to marijuana tinctures, as the country has temporary measures that allow additional freedoms with this medication.
Denmark features a conservative medical marijuana program, which permits the use of authorized cannabis-based medicines — only Sativex, Marinol and Nabilone are allowed. Through a magistral preparation prescription, however, patients may use other forms of cannabis, like capsules or oils.
The Danish Medicines Agency issued a temporary expansion to medical cannabis use in 2018. Its medicinal cannabis pilot program permits physicians to prescribe additional types of medical marijuana, such as fresh, dried flowers. The program, however, concludes in 2022.
An advantageous feature of Denmark’s medical marijuana laws is that they incorporate medical cannabis into the country’s healthcare system. Whether you’re receiving a cannabis-based medicine or another form of medical marijuana, you can visit your local pharmacy, and they’ll fulfill your order within three business days.
Denmark places a more significant emphasis on physicians, rather than patients. Instead of you or your caregiver applying to carry cannabis, renew compassionate care permits or obtain a pilot program prescription, it’s up to your practitioner to file, create and submit any necessary documentation.
While patients with magistral preparation and pilot program prescriptions are exempt from penalties associated with cultivating, carrying or transporting medical cannabis, recreational users are not. If you’re driving under the influence of medical marijuana, however, you’re subject to a fine and the loss of your driver’s license.
For recreational users carrying a small quantity of cannabis, penalties include fines and jail time. Fines scale off the amount of marijuana, while prison times range from one to two years, depending on the courts. In most cases, you’ll receive either a fine or jail time.
Like many other medical marijuana programs, there are some limiting factors to Denmark’s program. One of the most significant is the lack of education provided to physicians, which has resulted in more than 100 patients being denied medical cannabis since the start of Denmark’s pilot program.
Denmark also limits patients in the type of medical marijuana they may access. While the pilot program alleviates this restriction, it’s a temporary addition — legislators may make it permanent, however, depending on the data and the public’s opinion.
A final restriction of the country’s program is that it prevents minors from accessing medical cannabis. Research studies, however, demonstrate medical marijuana can have a positive impact on children with certain conditions, such as epilepsy.
The most significant protection afforded to patients and doctors by Denmark’s medical marijuana laws is that they legalize the use of this natural, effective medicine. In many countries across the globe, patients risk fines and imprisonment to ease their symptoms — Denmark removes that threat.
The country’s laws also emphasize the importance of providing citizens with potent, safe and high-quality medicine. It’s one of the reasons Denmark is focused on offering cannabis-based medications before adopting other traditional forms of marijuana, like flower, oils and capsules.
At MarijuanaDoctors.com, we understand the complexity of cannabis legislation. That’s why we help patients, physicians and caregivers around the globe learn about medical marijuana laws in a simple, direct format that breaks down confusion and prevents misunderstandings.