Texas Legalizes Cannabis Oil!
Yesterday, Governor Greg Abbott signed a bill into law allowing epilepsy patients access to to “low-THC” cannabis oil, also known as CBD oil. This law will allow the state to prepare to distribute the miraculous oil which has gained a large amount of media attention due to the healing effects of the strain Charlotte's Web.
The Governor stated on Monday, “There is currently no cure for intractable epilepsy and many patients have had little to no success with currently approved drugs. However, we have seen promising results from CBD oil testing and with the passage of this legislation, there is now hope for thousands of families who deal with the effects of intractable epilepsy every day.” Abbott affirms that medical marijuana will not be legalized as a result of him signing the bill.
In the coming years, Texas will offer a new form of medication but unfortunately, it won't be easily accessible for those who need it. Texas epilepsy patients will need to have used at least 2 pharmaceutical drugs that have unsuccessfully reduced their seizures. Also, even after using two prescription drugs, the patient must receive permission from two state-licensed physicians before being approved for the medication.
Marijuana activists are very concerned about this bill. Heather Fazio, director of the Texas chapter of the Marijuana Policy Project, told reporters weeks ago that the bill was basically worthless because the language of it only allows doctors to "prescribe" cannabis oil. According to Americans for Safe Access, “Doctors may not 'prescribe' marijuana for medical use under federal law, though they can 'recommend' its use under the First Amendment.” Prescribing medical marijuana is a set up for prosecution under the Controlled Substances Act. Fazio hopes that the signing of the bill will persuade state legislature to come up with a better approach to medical marijuana in the future.
Texas is now the 15th state to legalize cannabis oil. The Texas Department of Public Safety will oversee the programs regulation and is planning for at least three CBD oil dispensaries to be up and running by September 2017.