(CMR) In light of reports of a teen becoming ill after accessing cannabis products through a local pharmacy, Chief Medical Officer Dr. Nick Gent has issued guidance to healthcare professionals on the possession and use of cannabinol and cannabinol derivatives in the Cayman Islands.
According to a statement from the Ministry of Health and Wellness, Dr. Gent initiated a set of inquiries in light of the public interest and impact on public health following the report and subsequent complaint about a young person becoming ill after being able to access edible cannabinol/ cannabinol derivative products from a local pharmacy via a local delivery service.
“It became evident, fairly early on, that some health care professionals are not certain of what relevant Cayman laws permit or prohibit when it comes to products containing cannabinol or
its derivatives,” Dr. Gent explained.
“There are concerning misconceptions where many professionals believe that local law allows for the importation and general sale of products containing cannabinols if derived from hemp and products containing certain forms of psychoactive cannabinol derivatives- mainly the tetrahydrocannabidiol isomers or THCs,” he added.
Dr. Gent believes the misconceptions likely stem from the assumption that certain legal provisions and exemptions that exist and are in effect in the United States also apply to the Cayman Islands.
“This is absolutely not the case. We are guided by local laws, and in this case, the Misuse of Drugs Act (2017 Revision),” Dr. Gent stressed.
As such, Dr. Gent has issued an advisory note to all healthcare professionals registered as clinical
practitioners in the Cayman Islands as follows:
– All clinical practitioners should be careful to only prescribe, dispense, or use cannabinol and cannabinol derivative products by reference to the Misuse of Drugs Act (2017 Revision);
– For the purpose of clarity, there are no exemptions in Cayman Islands law for the importation and sale of hemp-derived products;
– All isomers of tetrahydrocannabidiol (THC) are controlled under the Misuse of Drugs Act (2017 Revision);
– As specified in the Misuse of Drugs Act (2017 Revision), the use of properly formulated medicines is to be preferred when prescribing cannabinol and cannabinol derivatives for clinical care.
“Our aim is to ensure that all health care professionals are informed and compliant, so I encourage any health professional who needs further guidance and assistance to contact me directly,” Dr. Gent added.
The Misuse of Drugs Act (2017 Revision) can be found on https://cbc.gov.ky/images/documents/MISUSE-OF-DRUGS-LAW-2017.pdf