Importing medical cannabis into Europe will now be made possible, as ECH launch a new, simple, and efficient platform to facilitate licensed import.
The first platform to facilitate importing medical cannabis into Europe has formally launched in the UK. Astral Health will act as a gateway to the European cannabis market, providing a simple and efficient system for the licenced import and distribution of approved medical cannabis products. German, Italian, French and Spanish market announcements will follow over the coming weeks.
Life changing access to be provided
The company will provide European patients living with a range of chronic and debilitating conditions with life changing access to the best medical cannabis products available by offering a streamlined end-to-end system for bringing products into the market. Its services include support on market access, approvals and navigating the regulatory system, as well as education, training and intelligence.
The launch of the end-to-end platform follows the formation of a new UK joint venture between ECH and Miller & Miller Chemicals Ltd. The agreement formalises their existing working relationship as experts in this field and is demonstrative of their shared commitment to providing better access for patients.
ECH recently opened The Medical Cannabis Clinics, Britain’s first chain of specialist medical cannabis clinics and achieved a historic milestone by facilitating the importation of the UK’s first bulk shipment of cannabis-based medicine since the Home Office decision to legalise it for prescription last November.
Despite legalisation, only a handful of prescriptions for medical cannabis have been written to date – with the vast majority originating through The Medical Cannabis Clinics.
Importing medical cannabis to improve access
Dean Friday, ECH CFO & Director, said: “The launch of Astral Health is a pioneering step forward that will support increased market access to medical cannabis across Europe. The legalisation of prescription cannabis in the UK has given people with chronic illnesses hope; the next step is to ensure the availability of this medication to those who need it. By facilitating the licensed import of approved medical cannabis products on an ongoing contractual basis through Astral Health, that’s what we are working to achieve.”
John Miller of Miller & Miller, said: “I am delighted to formalise our relationship with ECH to launch this important new platform, which will help patients access the best medical cannabis products on the market by streamlining the process for bringing them into different countries. Astral Health is a key step to transforming the medical cannabis landscape around Europe.”
Access to medical cannabis products will have benefits for patients across Europe suffering a variety of chronic and life-altering conditions. As an independent platform with a growing network of relationships with global cannabis producers, Astral Health will provide a unique channel to boost access to affordable healthcare across Europe.
The establishment of the new venture comes as the regulatory outlook in Europe and beyond continues to shift. Last month saw the European Parliament vote in favour of a non-binding resolution seeking to encourage European Union countries to increase access to medical cannabis, and the World Health Organisation has also called for cannabis to be removed from Schedule IV of the 1961 Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs.