After an explosive debate, Pennsylvania senate overwhelmingly approved a medical marijuana bill Wednesday to decriminalize the drug, though Gov. Tom Corbett is opposed to it.
While this is a milestone for the state, Pennsylvania still has a long way to catch up with 30 other U.S. states that have already approved medical use of marijuana, reported the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws.
All senate Democrats voted in favor of the bill, along with 20 out of 27 Republicans. Most of the “yes” votes were from senators who have a background in law enforcement, reported the Associated Press.
The bill states that patients who want to obtain a registration card from the state Health Department will need to have a written confirmation from a doctor of the pressing medical condition that qualifies such patient to obtain marijuana. Only non-smoking versions of the drug are allowed such as edibles, tinctures, ointments and oil extracts.
The senate’s discussion was heavily influenced by parents of epileptic kids who say the marijuana extract can assist their children. However, the bill allows marijuana to be consumed in various forms that Gov. Corbett has revealed he will allow.
The bill’s opponents wanted to amend the bill to a version that is more acceptable to Gov. Corbett, which is one that avails the drug to children with seizures and prescribed by specialists as research into the possible medical benefits of medical cannabis are reviewed by experts.
The bill provides for a State Board of Medical Cannabis Licensing that will be nominated by the governor to control the registration, licensing and control of dispensaries, growers and processors.
The bill allows patients with the following medical conditions to access medical marijuana: epilepsy, cancer, Lou Gehrig’s disease, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, post-concussion syndrome, severe fibromyalgia, traumatic brain injury, post-traumatic stress disorder, wasting syndrome and spinocerebellar ataxia. To register for a free 2-week subscription to ForexMinute Premium Plan, visit www.forexminute.com/newsletter.
To contact the reporter of this story; Jonathan Millet at firstname.lastname@example.org