ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI - PRESS RELEASE - On Dec. 6, Amendment 2, the medical marijuana initiative which Missouri voters overwhelmingly approved on Nov. 6, goes into effect as Missouri law. For the first time, Missouri doctors and patients have legal protections under the state’s constitution to discuss medical marijuana as a treatment option.
Under the new law, state-licensed physicians can recommend medical marijuana to Missouri patients with qualifying conditions, including cancer, epilepsy, PTSD, chronic pain, HIV, prescription medication addiction, terminal illnesses and any other medical condition determined to be debilitating or chronic. Applications for patient cards won’t be available from the Missouri Department of Heath and Senior Services until spring or early summer (by June 4 DHSS must begin making patient applications available), but now is the time for patients and doctors to begin having important conversations about medical marijuana as a possible treatment option.
“It’s an important date for this landmark constitutional provision,” said Jack Cardetti, spokesman for MoCannTrade, the trade association helping to implement the new law in Missouri. “Today really gets the ball rolling on the timeline of requirements that the Department of Health and Senior Services need to initiate. But more importantly, doctors and patients now have legal protections to begin discussing a safe, compassionate treatment option that was previously prohibited."
The new law, which received more votes than any other issue or candidate on Missouri’s November ballot, gives doctors and health care providers a constitutional protection by stating they “shall not be subject to civil or criminal prosecution under Missouri law, denial of any right or privilege, civil or administrative penalty or sanction, or disciplinary action by any accreditation or licensing board or commission for … providing health care services that involve the medical use of marijuana consistent with this section and legal standards of professional conduct.”
Over the course of implementation in 2019, MoCannTrade will be providing a number of educational materials and resources to help educate the medical and business community about the law and its provisions. New Approach Missouri, the committee that successfully passed Amendment 2, will continue to educate and advocate for patients and veterans, so that Missouri has the most effective medical marijuana law in the country.
“We are confident the Department of Health and Senior Services will do its due diligence and meet the law’s requirements in a timely manner. The best thing patients can do right now is begin to have a conversation with their state-licensed physician about whether medical marijuana is a potential treatment option so that come this spring they can begin the certification and application process for a patient identification card,” said Cardetti.