New Patient FAQ’s

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New Patient FAQ’s

What is the process?
First of all, one of the team will assess your eligibility via a FREE information session. If deemed eligible, you’ll be booked in with a doctor via telehealth for a consultation. Thereafter, we take care of everything for you and you’ll have your medication delivered to your door from one of one pharmacy partners.
What happens after I speak with the doctor?

You’ll be connected to one of the team who will explain the process and treatment that has been selected for you. We’ll then collect payment for your care plan and proceed to organise for your medication to be dispensed via one of our pharmacy partners. They will dispense your medication, package it up and facilitate delivery to your residential address.

Why should I choose Cannvalate?

Founded and funded by Australian doctors, we were the first service to demystify the process for patients back in 2018. Since that time, we assist and support over 50,000 patients a year.

One thing that separates us from other companies is that we are medication and company agnostic. That means that a medication brand and product is selected purely based on the suitability for you as the patient based on individual needs and circumstances.

What is cannabis?
Cannabis is a term used to describe any plant in the genus cannabis, including dried flowers and leaves (commonly known as marijuana), seeds, extracts and resins.

The cannabis plant produces a group of chemicals called cannabinoids, one of which is delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (or THC). This is the main cannabinoid responsible for the ‘high’ produced by cannabis.

Probably the most widely used cannabinoids in named cannabidiol (CBD). CBD is not psychoactive and therefore has no psychoactive effect. This means CBD doesn’t cause a high and/or change a person’s state of mind when using it.

What is medicinal cannabis?
‘Medicinal cannabis’ refers to the range of legal, approved and quality assured cannabis preparations intended for human therapeutic use. This includes pharmaceutical cannabis preparations such as  oils, tinctures, capsules and other extracts.

Medicinal cannabis contains specific active components in known amounts and mixtures, which can be carefully controlled, standardised and administered for patient use.

Besides THC, another important cannabinoid found in medicinal cannabis is cannabidiol (or CBD).

How is medicinal cannabis regulated?
In Australia, the Commonwealth Department of Health regulates medicinal cannabis products through the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) and the Office of Drug Control (ODC).

Regulations are in place to ensure high-quality, consistent, and standardised medications are available for Australian consumers.

What does medical cannabis or CBD oil do?
In order to understand the therapeutic benefits of cannabinoids, we need to understand the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS). The endocannabinoid system is responsible for regulating our internal bodily functions and maintaining a state of balance (homeostasis). This includes sleep, appetite, reproduction, memory, inflammation, mood and many other things.

The endocannabinoid system is made of three main parts:

  • Endocannabinoids are the body’s own version of cannabis compounds;
  • Receptors aid absorption and mediate the effects of cannabinoids and endocannabinoids; and
  • Enzymes regulate the breakdown of endocannabinoids after completing their function.

Endocannabinoids occur naturally in our bodies. Phytocannabinoids are found in plants like the cannabis plant and can mimic the action of endocannabinoids.

What conditions have received medicinal cannabis approvals?
Medicinal cannabis has been approved for over 100 various medical conditions in Australia.  However, approvals are granted on a case by case basis depending on a patient’s symptoms, circumstances and needs.

Some common conditions include:

  • Chronic pain
  • Anxiety
  • Chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting
  • Refractory paediatric epilepsy
  • Palliative care indications
  • Cancer Pain
  • Sleep conditions
  • Neuropathic pain
  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
  • Fibromyalgia
  • and many others.

To understand whether you may be eligible for medicinal cannabis therapy, please speak to one of our qualified doctors or team of experts.

For the most up-to-date and accurate information on cannabis medicine and prescribing medicinal cannabis in Australia, please visit

Is medicinal cannabis legal?
Prescribing of medicinal cannabis to patients has been legal since November 2016 throughout Australia.  However, individual states also have separate legislation regarding details of approvals and conditions that patients have that may be approved.

In October 2016, the Commonwealth Government made amendments to the Narcotics Drugs Act 1967, making it legal to cultivate cannabis for medicinal or scientific purposes under a national licensing scheme. The scheme also requires that cannabis products be made available to patients only with a prescription from an authorised medical practitioner.

Cannabis remains a highly regulated drug in Australia and growing or using cannabis without the relevant licences or authorised prescription remains illegal.

Are there different product types and formats of administration?
There are a number of medical cannabis formats including, oil in tincture format,  vape concentrate, oral spray and softgels and dried flower (bud)

Prescriptions can therefore be taken in a variety of ways:

Ingestion and sublingual: Oil, oral spray and softgels can all be ingested or administered sublingually (under the tongue). Their effects are typically felt in the first two hours of administration, lasting anywhere from 6 to 8 hours.

Inhalation: Dried flower and vape concentrate are inhaled. The effects are typically felt immediately, however it can take up to 30 minutes to reach full effect. Effects last anywhere from 2 to 4 hours.

Topical: Oils can also be added to lotions, gels or creams that can be applied topically. The effects are typically felt immediately depending on the application site. Effects last for 1 or 2 hours and need to be applied frequently.

Dosage, concentration, individual biological factors and method of consumption will all affect your response time to feeling the effects of medicinal cannabis.

Are there any side effects?

Like all prescription medicines, medicinal cannabis products can have side effects. These may include:

  • fatigue and sedation
  • vertigo / confusion
  • nausea and vomiting
  • fever
  • appetite increase or decrease
  • dry mouth
  • diarrhea
  • convulsions
  • feelings of euphoria (intense happiness) or depression
  • hallucinations or paranoid delusions
  • psychosis or cognitive distortion (having untrue thoughts)

The extent of side effects can vary with the type of medicinal cannabis product and between individuals.

Are medical cannabis products quality controlled?
The TGA has established quality standards for medicinal cannabis products and all companies who import, manufacture and supply medicinal cannabis products in Australia are required to meet them.
Who can access medical cannabis products?
Any patient with any medical condition can, in theory, be prescribed medicinal cannabis by their doctor, if they believe it is an appropriate therapy.

However, state regulations may be in place that limits prescriptions for certain conditions, to certain doctors or certain forms of medicinal cannabis.

Eligibility to be prescribed medicinal cannabis is assessed on an individual basis taking into account many factors in a patient’s history.  This is best conducted by a doctor experienced in medicinal cannabis assessment and prescribing.

How can patients access medical cannabis?
Medical cannabis for therapeutic purposes can only be prescribed by a medical practitioner with an appropriate approval. If a doctor is not authorised to prescribe medicinal cannabis products, he or she can refer their patient to one of our expert doctors . Once  applications are finalised and approved, all medicinal cannabis products are dispensed by a licenced pharmacist.
What is the cost of medicinal cannabis?
The cost of medicinal cannabis treatment varies, however most patients pay between $3 – $10 a day, depending on the nature of the condition being treated, the product required and the dosage of the required product.

Medicinal cannabis products are not currently subsidised by the Commonwealth Government.

Can I drive while being treated with medicinal cannabis?
Patients should not drive or operate machinery while being treated with medicinal cannabis. Patients should understand the implications for safe and legal driving before taking cannabis therapies.

We wish to advise that patients receiving cannabinoid medication should not drive, work at heights, operate heavy machinery, or work in situations where intact reaction times are critical for safety. This is as treatment with cannabinoids can impact response times.

Are there any conditions that aren’t compatible with medicinal cannabis treatment?
In general, medicinal cannabis can be used in a wide range of conditions.

However, the following conditions are not compatible with medicinal cannabis, or certain forms of this:

  • Allergy, or hypersensitivity to cannabis or parts of the medication (e.g. the carrier oil)
  • Patients who are pregnant, planning to become pregnant or breastfeeding
  • Patients with certain psychiatric conditions (such as psychosis) and the use of THC
Are there interactions with other medications?
It is best to seek health professional advice when discussing issues around medication.  This includes specifics on medicinal cannabis, or your other medications.

For the most up-to-date and accurate information on cannabis medicine and prescribing medicinal cannabis in Australia, please visit


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