Mr BELL (Mount Gambier) (11:01): I move:
That this house—
(a) recognises the growing importance of medicinal cannabis and cannabidiol (CBD) as an alternative treatment option for South Australians;
(b) supports expanded research and clinical trials into the treatment of conditions, including endometriosis, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and chronic pain; and
(c) streamlines access to locally manufactured products for South Australian residents.
Mr PEDERICK (Hammond) (11:30): I rise to make a contribution to this motion from the member for Mount Gambier in regard to support for medicinal cannabis. I think that it is a very worthy motion and that more work needs to be done because medicinal cannabis is being used as an alternative medicine and it has been hard for people to get access to it. I have had some constituents who have had trouble getting prescriptions and had to go to specialists in Victoria, which makes it difficult.
I am hoping that over time—and I think it is over time, opening them up—more doctors will be willing to prescribe medicinal cannabis. From my understanding, it goes against their culture, a bit of using traditional medicine. However, there are people looking at ways to get past that, whether it is for chronic pain, epilepsy or a whole range of issues which confront people in their day-to-day lives and for which they need to find support.
It is a fact that some people use illegal cannabis, and I would like to see access to medicinal cannabis made easier so that people could go down that path. I understand that people find all sorts of ways to access medicinal cannabis on the black market, so we want to rule that out as well. We want to make it affordable and ethical for people to access this product. It is grown in a highly regulated way.
One of these operations was going to be set up in my electorate, ringed with barbed wire and security cameras. It did not get off the ground, but that was going to be the program, and one featured on Landline the other day. There are a lot of costs involved to get it going, and I certainly do not think anyone is getting rich real quick real soon. I think the issue is bigger than that; I think it is about providing an alternative for people for pain relief or for whatever medical condition they may have.
I commend the motion. Let's hope that more research is ongoing because I know that the medical profession love to have a long time line for research, but they also need to look at the physical evidence in front of them and talk to the people who are getting relief, and significant relief at times, from the use of medicinal cannabis.