The Medical Cannabis Products Reimbursement Scheme (MCPRS) helps you to apply for funding for cannabis-based products prescribed by your consultant.
How it works
If you have a prescription for a cannabis-based product and paid to buy it from a pharmacy abroad, you can claim your money back. It may also be possible to arrange for the HSE to make direct payments to a pharmacy on your behalf.
The Medical Cannabis Products Reimbursement Scheme is part of the Government's Medical Cannabis Access Programme. It allows cannabis-based products which meet certain regulations to be prescribed in Ireland and imported.
The scheme only covers medical cannabis products purchased from Transvaal Apotheek (pharmacy) in the Netherlands.
Who can get funding
Only patients with one of the following medical conditions can apply for funding:
- spasticity associated with multiple sclerosis resistant to all standard therapies
- intractable nausea and vomiting associated with cancer chemotherapy, despite the use of standard anti-emetic regimens
- severe, refractory (treatment-resistant) epilepsy that has failed to respond to standard anticonvulsant medications
These conditions must be verified by your treating hospital consultant.
How to get approval for funding
You will need to apply to the Primary Care Reimbursement Service (PCRS). They will review your application for funding and advise you if you are approved.
Your medical consultant can help you with this. They will need a 'ministerial licence' from the Department of Health to legally prescribe cannabis-based products on your behalf.
Your GP cannot prescribe cannabis-based products on your behalf.
How to claim your money back
Once you've been approved for funding, you'll need to send the following documents to the Medical Cannabis Product Reimbursement Scheme office:
- a copy of the 'Ministerial Licence' that has been issued to your treating clinician
- a letter of approval for reimbursement from the PCRS
- proof of payment for products - for example, a bank statement
- original invoices issued by Transvaal Pharmacy
If you do not submit this documentation then the Medical Cannabis Products Reimbursement Scheme will not be able to make direct payments on your behalf.
Where to send your documents
Post your documents to:
Cannabis Products Reimbursement Scheme,
What happens after your application is approved
The Medical Cannabis Products Reimbursement Scheme will arrange to:
- repay the cost of any prescribed and approved medical cannabis product you have paid for
- make direct payments to the pharmacy on your behalf - this ensures you will not have to pay up front anymore
The scheme aims to cover past payments and directly pay Transvaal Pharmacy in the Netherlands within 20 working days.