Staring summer of 2018, some patients in Louisiana will be able to treat select medical conditions with medical marijuana.
Regulators crafting the state’s medical marijuana policies worry that they still need to develop critical rules to accommodate the growing number of state-approved treatable conditions, which they expect will cause the state’s medical marijuana program to grow at a much quicker pace than was previously anticipated.
Lawmakers Struggle to Address Important Issues in Medical Marijuana Policies
Among the top concerns are figuring out how doctors will administer medical marijuana, what an appropriate 30-day supply of medical marijuana looks like, and whether or not to do away with the 100-patient cap. Currently, doctors can only “recommend” medical marijuana to no more than 100 patients. The State Board of Medical Examiners imposes the limitation on all physicians. Some have discussed tripling the cap, but so far, no action has been taken.
At this point, doctors can merely “recommend” medical marijuana rather than “prescribe” the drug because it remains illegal under federal law. The drug is limited to a thirty-day supply, which members of the Board of Medical Examiners must establish.
The List of Treatable Conditions for Medical Marijuana Grows
Under a recent bill that is likely to pass, the list of conditions that may be treated with the controversial drug has grown. The bill would allow for people with the following ailments to use medical marijuana:
- Severe muscle spasms
- Parkinson’s disease
- Intractable pain
- Autism spectrum disorder
Previously, the list was limited to:
- Wasting syndrome
- Seizure disorders
- Crohn’s disease
- Muscular dystrophy
- Multiple sclerosis
Marijuana Possession Still Illegal in Louisiana
An increasing number of states are making marijuana available to patients who suffer from chronic and debilitating conditions. While it may help many patients manage their conditions better, marijuana may not be used for recreational purposes. Marijuana possession remains a serious offense. Those who use marijuana recreationally or who sell marijuana may face both state and federal charges, and steep penalties.
Drug charges of any kind can have a dramatic impact on your reputation. You deserve a lawyer who understands Louisiana drug laws and can provide a strong defense strategy. Attorney Eric G. Johnson of The John D. & Eric G. Johnson Law Firm provides thorough and competent criminal defense for those facing state and federal marijuana charges throughout Louisiana. Contact our firm by calling (318) 377-1555 or send us an email to receive a free consultation.