Canada’s first evidence-based medical cannabis formulary launches today

Cannabis Standard provides blueprint for patients to make smart medical cannabis choices and reshapes cannabis research landscape

TORONTO, March 20, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Reformulary Group, a Canadian healthcare technology company, today announced the launch of Cannabis Standard™ – the first evidence-based medical cannabis formulary and research platform for patients, employers and physicians - available on a subscription basis to patients.

Cannabis Standard, one-part formulary and one-part research platform, uses evidence to help patients determine if they are a good candidate for medical cannabis, a class of medicines also referred to as cannabinoid-based medicine (CBM). The platform also works to find the right product for the patient’s specific conditions and symptoms.

Cannabis Standard is based on a comprehensive review of clinical evidence related to medical cannabis, and on the advice of an expert committee – first announced in May, 2018. The committee includes practicing physicians and expert clinical pharmacists (please see below for complete list of committee members).

“Until now, there was an absence of a comprehensive review of evidence around medical cannabis. Patients and physicians did not have access to the necessary information around dosing, strains and product types,” said Helen Stevenson, Reformulary Group founder and CEO. “Cannabis Standard is designed to help patients make informed decisions and take an active role in building evidence for medical cannabis use. It also provides detailed product recommendations and dosing that can help patients start the conversation with their physicians.”

Cannabis Standard connects patients and physicians through its “Note for my Doctor” feature, an electronic note generated when the patient inputs his/her condition and symptoms. The memo provides detailed information about suitable lines of therapy, dosing and strains and makes a product recommendation.

The platform uses a survey research tool to help patients track their outcomes to better assess how medical cannabis affects their symptoms and quality of life. The insights will help Reformulary Group better understand the broader use and benefits of medical cannabis – informing future research projects and supporting better health outcomes for all patients.

Cannabis Standard also connects patients with several Licensed Producers (LPs). These partnerships provide Canadians, subscribed to the platform, with medical cannabis products at preferred prices – offering patients the full benefits of preferred pricing. The company does not take any commissions, nor does it benefit from the sale of medical cannabis.

Reformulary Group has partnership agreements with four preferred LPs to-date: Canopy Growth (Spectrum Cannabis) MedReleaf, Aphria and Starseed. The company continues to add LP partners to its formulary and is also building a product categorization model, which identifies all LP products that meet with specifications. This will ensure patients are able to see comparable products during a supply shortage.

There are over 340,000 authorizations for medical cannabis in Canada; however, only four per cent of employers are providing coverage in their benefit plans.1 Many employees are taking a proactive approach and asking their employers for information and/or coverage for medical cannabis. Cannabis Standard functions as a valuable platform for employees and employers alike.  

“Although a number of companies are not ready to add medical cannabis to their benefits plans at this time, there is a growing need for employers to offer some form of support to employees who are medical cannabis patients,” said Alison McMahon CEO, Cannabis at Work.  “Employers who secure access to preferred pricing from multiple cannabis producers, as well as medical guidance for their employees, can provide a valuable benefit to their workforce.”

The Cannabis Standard Committee is comprised of experts who specialize in medical cannabis and evidence-based reviews, including the following:

  • Dr Danial Schecter, family physician and founder of Cannabinoid Medical Clinic. As of February 22, 2019, Director, Global Medical Research, Canopy Growth Corporation
  • Dr Paul Daeninck, medical oncologist at CancerCare Manitoba and President of the Board, Canadian Consortium for the Investigation of Cannabinoids (CCIC)
  • Dr Paul Oh, Medical Director, Cardiac Rehab and Secondary Prevention Program at Toronto Rehabilitation Institute, and Chair, Reformulary Expert Committee
  • Mike Boivin, clinical pharmacist consultant, President, CommPharm Consulting

Learn more at

About Reformulary Group
Founded in 2011, Reformulary Group is an expert-led healthcare technology company focused on helping Canadians and companies make smart drug and medical cannabis choices. The company’s proprietary drug list, the Reformulary®, is a subscription-based service offered to Canadian employers. The Reformulary provides Canadians with valuable comparative drug information, reviewed and vetted by an independent committee of doctors and pharmacists from across Canada. The company’s award-winning DrugFinder™ provides reliable information to empower patients to make smart drug choices. Reformulary Group also developed Cannabis Standard, one-part formulary, one-part research platform that provides guidelines for medical cannabis use based on evidence and expert advice. Cannabis Standard enables smart medical cannabis choices by Canadians. For more information visit

Media Contact:
Jihan Aziz, Account Executive, MAVERICK PR