Pennsylvania is now the 24th state in the country to offer medical marijuana.
Governor Wolf signed the bill into law Sunday afternoon at a ceremony in the Capitol rotunda surrounded by advocates and lawmakers.
The Pennsylvania House of Representatives passed Senate Bill 3 on Wednesday with a vote of 149-46 after the Senate passed it Tuesday with a 42-7 vote.
SB3 will allow doctors to prescribe marijuana to patients with qualifying conditions in pill, oil, ointment form, or a liquid form that can be vaporized and inhaled. Smoking will not be allowed.
The medical conditions covered by the bill include:
- Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis
- Crohn’s Disease
- Damage to the nervous tissue of the spinal cord with objective neurological indication of intractable spasticity
- HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) / AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome)
- Huntington’s Disease
- Inflammatory Bowel Syndrome
- Intractable Seizures
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Post-traumatic Stress Disorder
- Severe chronic or intractable pain of neuropathic origin or severe chronic or intractable pain in which conventional therapeutic intervention and opiate therapy is contraindicated or ineffective
- Sickle Cell Anemia
Patients will need to apply for a medical marijuana identification card and obtain a prescription from a registered doctor.
The state will allow 50 medical marijuana dispensaries, with each allowed to have up to three locations. Patients will not be able to grow their own plants.
The state’s Medical Marijuana Program is expected to take between 18 and 24 months to get up and running.
By Bill Mitchlowski
(Source: wnep.com; April 17, 2016; http://tinyurl.com/znhak5w)