Cool on legalised medical pot

HEALTH Minister Michael Ferguson yesterday expressed reluctance to support a further push towards legalised medical cannabis, believing that any change should be handled at a federal level.

Tasman Health Cannabinoids chief executive Troy Langman over the weekend said Tasmania was well-placed to become a cannabis crop site for medical purposes.

Mr Ferguson said cannabinoids were already available through authorised prescriptions for medical illnesses in Tasmania and around Australia.

``And I think that's the way it should be,'' he said.

``What we won't be seeing is the Liberal government opening up the smoking of pot in Tasmania.

``If cannabinoids can provide a proven treatment for illnesses, then there is no reason that they cannot be considered by the Therapeutic Goods Administration to be tested for their claims.''

Labor has already called for a debate on the issue.

Greens health spokeswoman Cassy O'Connor said her party would move to establish a parliamentary committee inquiry into legalisation of medicinal cannabis in the state.

``It is disappointing that the Health Minister has seen fit to be dismissive of this important medical issue, trivialising it by referencing people smoking pot, and then hand-balling responsibility to the federal arena,'' Ms O'Connor said.

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