Medical Cannabis Examined in UK, Florida, Oklahoma, New York

Epileptic boy’s case sparks UK review of medical pot laws

LONDON (AP) — British Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt says Britain must quickly review its policies on medical marijuana use in light of the case of a 12-year-old boy whose mother says he needs cannabis oil to prevent dangerous seizures.

British officials intervened over the weekend to allow the boy to use cannabis oil even though it is banned in Britain. His mother said his life was in danger and clinicians said it was a medical emergency.

Hunt told the BBC on Monday that he expects a review of medicinal use of cannabis to be completed with months.

Hunt said “I don’t think anyone who followed that story could sensibly say that we are getting the law on this kind of thing right.”

Florida smokable medical marijuana ruling put on hold

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — A Florida circuit court has reinstated a stay on smoking medical marijuana.

The state’s 1st District Court of Appeal has ruled that the hold will remain in effect “pending final disposition of the merits of (a recent) appeal.” The Department of Health appealed to a higher court earlier this month after Leon County Circuit Court Judge Karen Gievers upheld her May 25 ruling that the Florida Legislature’s provision banning smokable medical marijuana is unconstitutional.

This is the second medical marijuana case that the 1st District is taking up. Gievers ruled on April 11 that a Tampa man — Joseph Redner — is entitled under state law to possess, grow and use marijuana for juicing. Redner was prescribed juicing treatments from his doctor to prevent a relapse of Stage 4 lung cancer.

Fallin predicts special session if medical marijuana passes

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin says she expects to call lawmakers back to the Capitol for a special session if Oklahoma voters approve a state question next week to allow the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes.

Fallin on Monday expressed reservations about State Question 788 and said the Legislature would need to establish a legal framework for regulating the use of medical marijuana if the measure passes.

Fallin says the state question is so loosely written that it “basically allows recreational marijuana in the state of Oklahoma.” If approved by voters, the bill requires any application for a medical marijuana license to be signed by an Oklahoma board certified physician.

Earlier this year, the Oklahoma Legislature failed to pass a bill that would have set up regulations for medical marijuana.

Opioid users will qualify for New York medical marijuana program

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New Yorkers with an opioid prescription may soon qualify to join the state’s medical marijuana program.

State Health Commissioner Howard Zucker told reporters Monday that the Department of Health will develop regulations giving people the choice of enrolling in the medical marijuana program if they have been prescribed opioids.

Zucker says the move could save “countless” lives by preventing opioid addiction. His agency cited research showing marijuana can reduce opioid use while eliminating the risk of overdose and reducing the risk of addiction.

Meanwhile, the state Senate on Monday passed legislation to authorize medical marijuana for opioid addiction and as an alternative pain medication.

New York’s medical marijuana program now allows patients with 12 physician-certified conditions, including cancer, HIV-AIDS and chronic pain to use non-smokeable forms of marijuana.

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