A bill that recently passed through the House of Representatives in Louisiana was signed into law by Governor John Bel Edwards. The expansion to the medical marijuana program in Louisiana that this bill brings is something that families have been waiting on for quite some time now – some were even prepared to uproot their families if this bill did not become law.
“If they hadn’t passed we were going to sell the house and move to Colorado,” Pesh said.
Previously, the law only allowed for the possession of CBD oil, but left out anything about the production or sale of the plants or the oil, leaving patients with little choice on where to obtain the medicine. This is a problem we’ve been seeing all over the country, but mostly on the eastern side of the country, in states like Georgia and Alabama and even Florida who only allow CBD and offer little to no legal way to acquire the medicine.
This law will introduce the ability for doctors to recommend medical marijuana to patients who they believe will benefit from it – although, it must be one of the conditions on the list that is considered qualifying. For now, patients will have to resort to purchasing medical marijuana from out of state, which is technically a felony whether they cross state lines themselves or have it shipped to their door – but that should all change in the next couple of years.
Louisiana State University and Southern University get the first right of refusal when it comes to growing the medical marijuana. Should they say yes, they will begin building facilities immediately and medical marijuana could be available as soon as 18 months from now; on the other hand, should they refuse it would be up to the state to appoint a private facility which would have the rights to grow and sell the product. In either case, it would be sold to pharmacists who would sell it in a separate pharmacy storefront, licensed by the state.
“It simply is unacceptable to tell parents of kids especially that if they want to make available to their kids the medicine that is being recommended by their doctors in order to achieve some better quality of life, some reduction in pain or other symptoms, that they have to move,” Edwards said.
Thanks to this new law, in the matter of a couple short years there will be hundreds of patients able to find relief for the first time, with a much simpler and more legal means of obtaining their medicine. It’s not fair to leave sick patients feeling like and being treated like criminals, when all they want is to live better again. Each state that takes a step closer to legalizing is a step in the right direction and it’s nice to see improvements coming to some of the southern states lately!