A new agreement will see Australians prescribed medicinal cannabis get access within two days.

Existing legislation has created a double-approval process for both state and federal regulators, but a meeting of health ministers in Sydney has seen all state and territories sign up to a national scheme.

The scheme allows a streamlined approvals process through a single national body.

“Faster access, better access … there will be a one-stop shop for accessing medicinal cannabis,” Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt said.

“The decision as to whether or not to prescribe is rightly in the hands of medical professionals, but once that decision is made, access will then be provided within what we expect to be a 48-hour period.

“In many cases, as low as 24 hours.”

The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) single approval process started operating in New South Wales last month.

Mr Hunt says it has been very successful so far.

“We've already seen, in New South Wales, the time for prescriptions drop dramatically from two months to two days im that system,” he said.

“This is an important day for patient access.

“Now time should not be a matter of concern once a doctor has made his or her prescription.”