Medical Cannabis Coming To Florida | Stoner News
Since medical cannabis has swept the nation, the east coast has had trouble keeping up with the west. Many of the states on the east coast have problems even passing cannabis laws, forget about implementing them. This keeps patients from getting the healthier medicine they need and forces them to continue taking the painkillers that the doctors give them. Florida has had an especially hard time putting together it’s medical cannabis laws but good news for patients; the plant will hopefully be available to a small group of people starting as early as next week.
The cannabis laws in Florida were passed back in 2014 and allows for a low level THC strain to be distributed at six dispensing organizations that are licensed by the Department of Health. These six organizations are able to grow, process, and distribute low level THC cannabis to approved patients suffering from cancer, severe epilepsy, and chronic muscle spasms.
Trulieve, one of the six, received the go-ahead from the Department of Health to being selling their products to patients. Seeing as how only 15 doctors have signed up to order the low-THC products and there are no patients that are currently registered in the statewide database that shows eligible patients for the program. The dispensaries in Florida will only be able to sell to those in the database, so as of right now, there aren’t even any customers. The process was supposed to get under way over a year ago but the legal issues have been roadblocking the progress. Trulieve plans to open it’s dispensing facility in Tallahassee next week.
New legislature passed this year says that once the patient database in Florida reaches 250,000, three more dispensaries will be able to open, allowing many more patients access to medical cannabis as treatment. This update to the law also allows for dispensaries to start selling full strength cannabis in order to help with the ailments that low THC strains do not. The stronger strains should be available in August, according to Trulieve.
In November, Florida will again vote on whether or not to allow full strength cannabis for a multitude of other afflictions such as HIV/AIDS, glaucoma, and PTSD. This bill failed to pass back in 2014, falling short of the 60% approval that it needed. Patients hope that this time around, the voters will allow the higher THC cannabis to help with a wider range of illnesses, instead of just focusing on one.