Florida State, which had already made it legal for doctors to recommend for a very limited number of conditions along with terminally ill patients, medical cannabis. Then on November 8, 2016 voters overwhelmingly voted to allow patients with a wider array of medical conditions access to medical cannabis.
In November, voters in Florida moved to legalize the use of medical marijuana in the State for a broader group of patients. Until the approval of the constitutional amendment, which was made into law on November 8th, 2016, medical marijuana was only available to the terminally ill and patients with cancer, or a physical medical condition that chronically produces symptoms of seizures or severe and persistent muscle spasms,.
Amendment 2, which had narrowly failed to meet the required 60% majority in 2014, inspired an overwhelming response, with over 70% of the voters favoring it on November 8, 2016.
What Amendment 2 Allows
Under the just-passed amendment 2, certified doctors in Florida will have the authority to decide which patients conditions are eligible for medical marijuana so long as the condition is of the same class, like or kind as the other conditions laid out in the law. The doctor will establish a 90-day relationship with the patient, within which period they will evaluate the patient and determine whether medical marijuana is an appropriate treatment plan.
If the doctor decides that the benefits outweigh the risks patient is a good fit for this form of treatment, they will proceed to place an order for medical marijuana for the patient and submit the patient information so they receive their medical marijuana card. Amendment 2 has placed trust and confidence in today’s doctors and medical providers. Here at Green Health, we connect patients with those doctors so that they can establish this relationship and begin the process of receiving their recommendation at one of our many locations.
“Should any patient establish a relationship with a physician for 90 days, the 90 days is a restriction on the timeline for which a physician can create an order. So a physician can create an order once that 90 days has happened. At that point, or any time in the future, the physician can create an order for cannabis,” Christian Bax, State Director, the Office of Compassionate Use, told reporters.
Jeff Scott, the General Counsel for Florida Medical Association, echoed these sentiments. He said, “The department today basically left it up to physicians to decide how they will incorporate the provisions of Amendment 2 into their practice.”
New Rules To Regulate
State health officials, on Tuesday, Jan 17, released a set of rules to guide the issuance of medical marijuana. Meanwhile, Bax says that the health agency is working as fast as possible to pave the way forward on the regulations.
State Sen. Rob Bradley told reporters that he would support Bax’s stance for now, and so certified doctors in Florida have their green light to issue medical marijuana to deserving patients.
While medical marijuana was previously limited to patients with terminal illnesses and a handful of other conditions it is now available for a variety of ailments and chronic diseases. These include cancer, HIV/AIDS, Crohn’s disease, Lou Gehrig’s disease, glaucoma, epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, and patients with PTSD can now get access to a Florida medical marijuana and receive and Florida medical marijuana card, should their doctor recommend the treatment. Patients with other conditions whose symptoms follow the severity of those above can also use medical marijuana, which will be at the discretion of the doctor.