Tennessee Medical Cannabis Update
On the last day of the legislative session, lawmakers in TN reached a compromise bill on medical cannabis that will change how Tennessee approaches cannabis for the Volunteer State.
HB0490 introduces a new medical marijuana commission for the state, a committee of 9 appointed members charged with researching and designing medical cannabis laws and infrastructure for the state, as it awaits federal rescheduling of cannabis.
It also allows medical use of cannabis oil that is less than 0.9% THC for 9 qualifying conditions:
· Alzheimer's disease
· Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)
· Cancer, when such disease is diagnosed as end stage or the treatment produces related wasting illness, recalcitrant nausea and vomiting, or pain
Inflammatory bowel disease, including Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis
· Epilepsy or seizures
· Multiple sclerosis
· Parkinson's disease
· Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) or acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS)
· Sickle cell disease
Patients suffering from one of these conditions will be required to have a letter from a doctor that expires every six months and would need to get their oil out of state as it cannot be sold in Tennessee.
The idea behind this limited “compromise” bill, is to study and implement the infrastructure and legislation for medical cannabis in Tennessee before legalization or rescheduling cannabis occurs federally.
While the bill leaves many cannabis patients unhappy with the extremely limited access to medication, HB0490 is not a true medical cannabis bill. It is a precursor to what TN will implement for medical cannabis in the future.
Though it is important to have a thorough understanding of how to implement a medical cannabis program, many states have already implemented their MMJ programs successfully and should be used as an example for other states looking at medical cannabis in the future.
HB0490 isn’t a revolutionary bill, at best it’s a decision from the state to move forward with the conversation of medical cannabis, not the implementation of medical cannabis.
We look forward to the near future when the federal government pulls the trigger on the long overdue rescheduling of cannabis, and the federal legalization of both medical and recreational cannabis.
Until then, Tennessee will be hitting the books and (hopefully) working hard to introduce patient-focused legislation that brings compassion to the conversation of cannabis in the United States.
Become a Tennessee Cannabis Patient
Qualifying Tennessee patients will soon be able to meet with one of our certified physicians and get approved for medical cannabis treatment.
We’re dedicated to helping patients every step of the way, feel free to give us a call at 844-249-8714, and we can answer your questions about getting medical cannabis in Tennessee.