Medical cannabis patients in Australia will be part of a historic study, as radical new healthcare study ‘Project Twenty21’ officially begins.
Launched earlier this week, Project Twenty21 is an international registry of medical cannabis patients. Project Twenty21 will track the diagnosis, dosage information and healthcare outcomes of over 20,000 patients worldwide. Once completed, the registry will be the largest international body of evidence on medical cannabis to date.
While many countries (including Australia) currently track the prescription information of medical cannabis patients, that information has never been shared globally. This leaves a huge gap between research into medications and the outcomes of actual patients – a problem Project Twenty21 will begin to fix.
Along with Australia, confidential patient data will be collected from patients in Europe and England. To participate, patients must be taking an approved medication and be diagnosed with one of the following conditions:
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Substance Use Disorder
- Chronic Pain
Project Twenty21 was founded by Professor David Nutt, a former English Chief Drug Advisor who now works with organisation Drug Science. Drug Science will oversee Project Twenty21, under the watchful eye of England’s Royal College of Psychiatrists.
Professor Nutt intends for the data obtained from Project Twenty21 to inform legislation into funding medical cannabis through the NHS – England’s PBS equivalent. In Australia, medical cannabis is not covered by PBS, costing the average patient $436 monthly.
However, Project Twenty21 won’t just benefit legislators, according to Dr Arun Bhaskar, the British Pain Society’s president.
Trials like Project Twenty21 would provide evidence for safely and effectively prescribing these medicines.
Several medical cannabis companies are also participating in Project Twenty21, including BOD Australia. The data collected from Project Twenty21 will be analysed at the end of 2022. For more information on Australia’s current cannabidiol laws, click here.