The medical cannabis program in France is currently facing another short-supply issue after the health-authority recommended CBD:THC 20:1 oil also ran out of stock. The cause of the shortage is pointed towards the Directorate General of Health (DGS) and their handling of tender calls. The DGS is now conducting a second tender in an attempt to replace the supplier and/or the CBD 50 oil.
After France faced a shortage of the most-prescribed product in its medical cannabis trial program that’s currently ongoing, the health authorities recommended falling back on a CBD:THC 20:1 oil. Unluckily – or unanticipated – the 20:1 ratio oil was announced to be out of stock on Wednesday morning, April 19.
Does this sound like the end of the medical cannabis experiment in France? In any case, the signal sent is very worrying, but nothing is certain yet. So to keep up with this story, download our free cannabis news app.
France Faces a “Transitional Situation”
“We are in a transitional situation where we have no more products,” said Professor Authier to the French journal Le Quotidien du Médecin. “It is a very negative signal: France will have difficulty keeping health professionals in the experimentation,” he predicts.
Having run out of CBD 50 oil supplied by the Australian Little Green Pharma (LGP), the professor had been able to fall back on 20:1 oil, also supplied by LGP, for some patients in France with resistant neuropathic pain.
“And now I’m going to be stuck, because I’ll just have to offer them a balanced ratio of THC and CBD. He says. I also have patients who can’t tolerate THC, and I have nothing left to offer them.”
A Symposium Seeks Solutions
A briefing was held this Friday, April 21, at the DGS on the issue of the status of therapeutic cannabis in France, its possible reimbursement, and its possible legalization. As he had described during a recent symposium at the National Assembly in France, decisions must be taken quickly to not miss the boat of generalization.
“We need to make decisions before the summer,” said Professor Authier. “Otherwise, it will be too late to bring cannabis into the common law in France.”
Why Is France Out of Stock Again?
As for a reason for the out-of-stock, the role of the Directorate General of Health (DGS) in France is still pointed to.
“The calls for tender were launched too late,” says Professor Authier. “We go from administrative error to administrative error,” he laments.
Little Green Pharma, which supplies the two products that are out of stock in France, did not want to renew its contract for another year, as the first two years cost it around 10 million euros, according to our information.
The DGS is now trying to limit the costs after having failed to allocate all the lots of a first call for tenders aiming at providing the extension of the first two years of the experimentation in France. A second tender is currently underway to replace the supplier and/or the CBD 50 oil that failed in the first place. Is all of this just a warmup for a third tender for the 20:1 oil in France?
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