Israel’s Health Ministry recently released new directives easing restrictions on the possession and use of medical marijuana by authorized users. The directives, which go into effect immediately, allow patients who have been prescribed marijuana to consume the drug in public as oil or as vapor.
However, smoking cannabis, the method that most patients in Israel use, is still banned in public.
Permits for the use of medical marijuana have until now been very strict: Patients were only allowed to use it at the address listed in the permit, usually their home, and not in the presence of another person. Possession of marijuana was also restricted to the user’s home.
The Health Ministry’s medical marijuana unit said that the restrictions caused unnecessary bureaucracy, for example if a patient with a permit went on vacation or changed address, he or she had to apply to the unit for a change in the permit.
“We felt that a lot of bureaucracy was created over nothing,” the head of the cannabis unit, Yuval Landschaft, told Haaretz. [Read more at Haaretz]