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Govt Commits To Support Research On Medical Cannabis

The government has committed to supporting research on medical cannabis in order to come up with knowledge that helps address health needs of citizens.

Addressing the Cannabis Round Table meeting on Wednesday, Deputy Minister of Health and Child Care Dr John Mangwiro urged health practitioners to grab the opportunity to equip themselves with knowledge required to further homegrown research on medicinal cannabis.

“We have battled with different diseases, such as chronic pain, mental health, cancer, HIV/AIDS, and of late COVID -19 and now monkeypox. We hope to have innovative solutions from future research in collaboration with the private sector,” said Dr Mangwiro.

Dr Mangwiro encouraged the medical field to embrace indigenous knowledge systems which he said has more information on how some of the herbs used to treat incurable diseases.

Former Minister of Health and Child Care, Dr David Parirenyatwa said cannabis can be established to replace tobacco as it has medicinal, industrial, and recreational purposes.

“We want to see how we can legalize the use of cannabis and make its products accessible and affordable to the general population,” he said.

Cancer Specialist, Dr Nomsa Tsikai highlighted that more scientific research is needed to come up with knowledge on how to prescribe cannabis in the medical field.

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” l find it difficult to recommend cannabis to cancer patients because there is not much information about it. I’m talking about how much patients can take, which type, how often because it varies with different people,” she said.

However, Dr Tsikai added that it can also worsen a person’s outcome hence more research is necessary.

Zimbabwe legalized the farming of medicinal cannabis in 2018 and hasn’t made much progress in terms of investing in research to make it benefit the country economically.

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