A leading medicinal cannabis online education platform is encouraged by the strong interest it’s now seeing from New
Zealand’s key healthcare professionals. It follows genuine concern that doctors lack sufficient knowledge about
medicinal cannabis to prescribe it to patients.
The MCinfo.com stand has featured at GP and Pharmacist conferences and will also be present at MedCan Summit 2022 in
About 1,250 doctors and pharmacists have now registered on MCinfo.com – a dedicated medicinal cannabis information
The comprehensive online resource has been built and run by DATAPHARM. Director Don Budge says healthcare professionals
have jumped into action due to increasing patient enquiries with Kiwi-made products now a reality.
Three years ago, Parliament passed legislation to allow for the creation of a local medicinal cannabis industry to
deliver high-quality, yet more affordable products, for Kiwi patients. Every New Zealand doctor can now prescribe
medicinal cannabis for any condition, yet most surveyed have reported they need to be better informed about it.
“Interest from both patients and prescribers about medicinal cannabis has slowly been building in recent years. However,
with two local products now available and with two local producers GMP Licenced to Manufacture Medicines, with others to
follow, it has suddenly become a lot more real,” says Mr Budge.
Registration to MCinfo is free for doctors and pharmacists. The initiative also sees highly trained representatives on
the road to better inform healthcare professionals about medicinal cannabis.
Education sponsor of MCinfo is Helius Therapeutics. New Zealand’s largest medicinal cannabis company is thrilled with
the uptake so far.
“Helius is absolutely committed to medicinal cannabis education, with doctors and pharmacists’ knowledge key to improved
patient access. It’s great to see many more healthcare professionals now genuinely curious and actively educating
themselves. This is really good news for New Zealand patients,” says Carmen Doran, chief executive of Helius
While patients and the public can access MCinfo’s up-to-the-minute information on the use, potential benefits and risks
of cannabidiol (CBD), tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and other medicinal cannabinoid products, only MCinfo-registered
doctors and pharmacists can access the prescribers’ portal.
There they will obtain access to dedicated resources including MCinfo’s clinical fact sheets and a series of Zoom
presentations. The next one will be held on Wednesday, 1 December, with a presentation from Dr Ali Seyfoddin, Associate
Professor in Drug Delivery and Biological Engineering at the Auckland University of Technology (AUT). He will present on
‘Pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of medicinal cannabis: What we know and where we are heading.’
Mr Budge says as well as the virtual resources MCinfo provides, and having reps visiting doctors, MCinfo has had stands
at GPCME (General Practice and Medical Conference Exhibition) and the Independent Pharmacy Conference. Its next stand will be at Medcan Summit 2022.
MedCan 2022 will take place on 10 and 11 February at Auckland’s Cordis hotel, with Helius the foundation sponsor. Doctor
registrations for this have also been strong.
The industry summit will have a key focus on prescriber education, including a one-day Healthcare Professional Forum
where experts will present on the endocannabinoid system, clinical data, the applications and prescribing of medicinal
cannabis in medical practice.
“Next year is a big year for our country’s newest sunrise sector. Kiwis will see more local products on the market, with
Helius unleashing its export strategy. Initiatives like MedCan and MCinfo are increasingly important if we’re to satisfy
patient demand and address so many people’s quality of life. Afterall, Helius believes every New Zealander deserves the
right to a pain-free existence,” says Carmen Doran.
Recently Helius announced an education partnership with AUT, which sees the company sponsor three AUT PhD students to
research and develop advanced medicinal cannabis products, overseen by Dr Ali Seyfoddin.
DATAPHARM’s Don Budge says the industry’s leadership and collaboration to improve medicinal cannabis education and
prescriber knowledge remains critical.
“We’re really encouraged by the number of MCinfo registrations we’re now getting. Doctors and pharmacists told us they
were keen for a single trusted source of information with real-time access to medicinal cannabis’ ongoing global
developments. That’s exactly what we’re now providing, and it’s working for them,” says Don Budge.