Legalise Cannabis WA MP Dr Brian Walker has launched a campaign to persuade the federal government to list medicinal cannabis on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS).

Supporters of the move can send an automatic email to their elected representative and sign a parliamentary petition via Dr Walker’s website

Dr Brian Walker

He said: “I see patients on an almost daily basis who would benefit from medicinal cannabis to treat a whole range of recognised ailments, from chronic pain through to anxiety and insomnia. Many simply can’t afford the price tag that accompanies a prescription though.

“Governments across Australia, at both federal and state level, will tell you that medicinal cannabis is legal, but if it isn’t affordable and therefore readily available to patients who need it, what good does that platitude do?

“On average, PBS listing drops the price of otherwise expensive drugs to just a fraction of their pre-listing price. According to their own figures, most PBS medicines cost less than $42.50 – that’s 15% of the average cost of medicinal cannabis at present.”

“I’m calling on prime minister Albanese and his health minister Mark Butler to put our money where their mouths are, and begin the process of listing medicinal cannabis treatments on the PBS.

“At a time when prices are skyrocketing, we need the government to step up and ensure that ordinary Australians have access to the medicines they need to live a pain free and fulfilling life.”

Meanwhile, LCWA candidate Leanne Lockyer received 5.4% of the vote in last week’s North West Central by-election, up from the 3.9% the party received across the state in May’s federal poll. Nationals candidate Merome Beard took the seat with 40.25% of the vote.

UPDATE (October 19, 2022): Dr Walker’s PBS petition ended with 6,687 signatures, propelling it into third place in the federal government’s petition listings.

He said: “I would like to thank everyone who signed – we now have a fighting chance of making this healthy, healing herb more affordable and accessible for those who rely on it.”

Prior to launching Cannabiz, Martin was co-founder and CEO of Asia-Pac’s leading B2B media and marketing information brand Mumbrella, overseeing its sale to Diversified Communications in 2017. A journalist...

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