The Ministry of Health says Jamaicans must refrain from using unregistered cannabis products designated for medical and therapeutic purpuses.
In a statement on Wednesday, the Ministry said that it is recommended that medical cannabis products should have a maximum Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) content of 5 per cent.
However, health officials are concerned that persons may be exposed to unregistered products which THC content is unknown.
THC is the main mind-altering ingredient found in the cannabis plant.
The health ministry said under the Food and Drugs Act any substance manufactured, sold or represented for use in the diagnosis, treatment, prevention of a disease, disorder or symptoms is classified as a drug and must be registered and the requisite permits obtained from the Ministry.
The ministry further underscored that while the Dangerous Drugs (Amendment) Act, 2015 decriminalised cannabis use for specific purposes, cannabis is still classified as a controlled drug under the Food and Drugs Act.
“Also, in accordance with the provisions of the Pharmacy Act, the compounding, dispensing, storing for sale or retailing of drugs must be done at a registered pharmacy and by a registered pharmacist. Therefore, any company that is currently selling cannabis products for medical and therapeutic purposes is in breach of The Food and Drugs and The Pharmacy Acts.”
The health ministry is advising companies to consult with its Standards and Regulations Department, the Pharmacy Council of Jamaica and the Cannabis Licensing Authority if they wish to manufacture or distribute cannabis products to ensure that proper standards and procedures are followed and that their operations are in keeping with the relevant laws.
The health ministry says it does not support, for medicinal and therapeutic purposes, the smoking of cannabis and the use of food products containing cannabis.