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Thailand Opens First Full-time Medical Cannabis Clinic In Bangkok

Thailand has opened its first full-time medical cannabis clinic in Bangkok on Monday. The move is part of the government's efforts to develop its budding medical cannabis industry.

Patients at the clinic will receive free treatment for the first two weeks. The government estimates that the new clinic, which specializes in traditional and alternative cannabis-based medicine, will see some 200 to 300 patients daily. About 2,200 individuals have already registered at the clinic until March.

Thailand legalized medical cannabis in 2017, becoming the first Southeast Asian nation to do so. Cannabis is known by the name "Ganja" in Thailand.

Cannabis has historically been used in Southeast Asia as an ingredient, a medicine, a kitchen condiment and a source of fiber.

The health ministry's Government Pharmaceutical Organisation is currently the largest producer of cannabis in the country.

Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul said at the opening ceremony in Bangkok that the clinic is a pilot clinic because the country does not have enough doctors with expertise in cannabis.

Currently, there are about 25 cannabis clinics attached to public hospitals in Thailand, but they operate just a few days per week due to a paucity of specialized staff.

The government eventually plans to open one cannabis clinic in each district, for a total of 77 clinics in the country.

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