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Which doctors may prescribe medical cannabis?

With the exception of dentists and veterinarians, cannabis flowers can be prescribed by all doctors. Doctors who have not yet prescribed narcotics can obtain the prescription blocks from the Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices (Bundesinstitut für Arzneimittel und Medizinprodukte, BfArM).

Does the statutory health insurance pay for medical cannabis?

Patients with a serious illness are entitled to benefits if a generally recognised therapy that meets medical standards is not available or, in the opinion of the physician, cannot be used in the individual case.

Furthermore, there must be a prospect of a noticeable positive effect on the course of the illness or an alleviation of serious symptoms.

In the case of initial prescription, reimbursement must be approved by the health insurance company before the start of the cannabis therapy.

In the case of reimbursement by the statutory health insurance company, patients are obliged to participate in an anonymous accompanying study.

Can the verification by the health insurance company and the medical service be waived?

The statutory health insurance companies carry out an examination with every application, usually involving the medical service.

If cannabis is purchased on private prescription, the aforementioned examination by the statutory health insurance or the medical service does not take place.

If the patient has a private health insurance, reimbursement of the costs can be applied for there. The private health insurance decides at its own discretion on the reimbursement of costs.

What action can be taken if the request for reimbursement is rejected?

According to the current status, about 2/3 of the applications for the assumption of costs are approved by the statutory health insurance funds.

An objection can be lodged against a rejection of the application by the responsible health insurance fund within four weeks.

Here you will find a link to the text generator for an objection letter in German language: https://www.widerspruch.org/widerspruch-krankenkasse-du-wissen-solltest/


What is the “Begleiterhebung” (escort survey)?

If the costs for medical cannabis are covered by the statutory health insurance, the patient is obliged to participate in an anonymous accompanying study.

This survey is carried out for the first time one year after the start of treatment and subsequently annually for the duration of the therapy, or in case of premature discontinuation of therapy. For this purpose, the attending doctor completes a questionnaire on the treatment and sends it to the Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices (BfArM).

Is it allowed to inhale medical cannabis in public?

In principle, yes. To avoid misunderstandings, it is recommended to carry a copy of the current prescription and a “Cannabis Identity Card”. You can ask your doctor or the “Arbeitsgemeinschaft Cannabis als Medizin” (ACM) for a corresponding ID card. Doctors and pharmacists can obtain these cards directly from us.

Can medical cannabis be smoked?

Yes, but for health reasons other forms of application should be preferred. In addition, the drug application agreed upon with the doctor (regularly by vaporizer or as tea) must be adhered to. If a different form of intake is desired, this should also be discussed with your doctor.

How should patients store their medical cannabis?

Medicines must always be stored separately and safely away from access by children. A place protected from light and with minimal temperature fluctuations should be chosen.  A lockable place (e.g. drawer, safe, medicine cabinet) is recommended.  In general, cannabis can be stored at normal room temperature (below 25 °C). If the medicine has been heated for future tea preparation, refrigerated storage is recommended.

Are cannabis patients allowed to drive motor vehicles and heavy machinery?

During the familiarisation phase cannabis patients must refrain from driving motor vehicles and heavy machinery. This can last a week or even longer. Patients should strictly adhere to the dosage and form of administration discussed with their doctor.

What do cannabis patients have to consider when travelling abroad?

When travelling within the Schengen area, a “Schengen Certificate” from the doctor in charge is required for carrying medical cannabis. For journeys beyond this, the conditions for entry with medical cannabis must be obtained from an embassy or consulate of the destination country. Further information can be found on the BfArM website: www.bfarm.de

What is THC?

THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol) is a natural ingredient of the hemp plant (Cannabis Sativa), which – like all cannabinoids – unfolds its effect via the body’s own endocannabinoid system.

THC has a slightly euphoric effect, increases the feeling of well-being and intensifies the sensual perception. In addition, it has a fever-reducing effect, dilates the blood vessels and influences the coordination of movement and the ability to concentrate. It can lead to slurred speech, memory disorders, dizziness and reddened eyes. In high doses THC can cause intoxication.

THC is used in particular for:
– neuropathic and chronic pain
– Spasms
– Nausea and vomiting
– appetite stimulation

What is CBD?

CBD (cannabidiol) is a natural ingredient of the hemp plant (Cannabis Sativa), which – like all cannabinoids – unfolds its effect via the body’s own endocannabinoid system.

CBD has a calming, antipsychotic effect and can increase wakefulness. CBD cannot cause intoxication.

The use of CBD can be considered for:
– chronic pain
– Inflammations
– Anxiety disorders
– Nausea and vomiting
– Certain forms of epilepsy (Lennox-Gastaut and Dravet syndrome)
– Addiction to THC, nicotine and opiates.

Any other questions?

If you have further questions, please contact your doctor or pharmacist. If you miss important information here, you can inform DRAPALIN directly under info@drapalin.de and thus contribute to the improvement of our information offer.