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Ireland is following the footsteps of countries like New Zealand, Australia and Canada by making access to medicinal cannabis easier for patients.

Late last month, Irish Health Minister Simon Harris introduced a law allowing citizens to to access certain medicinal cannabis products as part of a five-year trial programme.

Doctors can now prescribe medicinal cannabis to patients who have failed to respond to standard treatments for specific conditions.

This is similar to the current law in Australia, which allows practitioners to prescribe medicinal cannabis to patients fitting the bill under the Therapeutic Goods Administration’s special access scheme.

Conditions include spasticity associated with multiple sclerosis, the nausea and vomiting associated with chemotherapy and severe epilepsy — though it does not cover chronic pain.

That is good news for a company like MGC Pharma (ASX:MXC), which has an approved epilepsy treatment called CannEpil.

The product arrived in Australia last year, and can be prescribed to patients with drug-resistant epilepsy under the TGA’s authorised prescriber scheme.

And in May CannEpil hit shelves in the booming UK cannabis market, thanks to distribution agreements with Grow Biotech and IPS Specials giving MGC access to an established network of over 5,500 pharmacies across the UK and seven months after the UK made changes to allow specialist doctors to prescribe medical cannabis to patients.

This content is produced by Star Investing in commercial partnership with MGC Pharmaceuticals. This content does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.