The Alabama Medical Cannabis Commission is setting new parameters for medical marijuana patients. The new program sets maximum daily doses of THC at 75 milligrams for adults and a 3% THC maximum potency for minors. Patients can possess no more than 70 days worth of products and will be allowed to but up to 60 days’ worth of cannabis products at a time.
Alabama state Medical Cannabis Commission Member Sam Blackmore said physicians could adjust those limits on a per-patient basis.
“Neurologists treat to effect. When it comes to products, you’re going to treat to an effect, not to package labeling. Practicing neurologists would submit in writing why they are exceeding the maximum dose,” Blackmore said to the commission via the Political Reporter.
Blackmore was one of the people nominated to join the commission by Governor Kay Ivey back in July.
Blackmore believes the correct dose is the “lowest that produces a therapeutic benefit without associated adverse events.”
Patient costs are also an important consideration. Topical THC creams are the least expensive per unit ($1.13 per ml), and sublingual sprays are the most expensive ($3.89 per ml). Cannabis lozenges (cough drops) are about $1.33 eachand capsules average $1.39 each.
“It’s important not to focus on high-end products, to ensure there are affordable options,” Blakemore said during his remarks. “We need to do anything we can to ensure patient affordability, so they’re not just getting certified by a physician and then going back to the black market.”
With proof of an Alabama residency and a doctor’s recommendation, patients can apply for a medical marijuana card. If approved, the Alabama Medical Cannabis Commission enters the patient’s information into the statewide cannabis patient registry system.
The commission’s website states that cannabis businesses can begin applying for licenses on September 1, 2022. The state is looking to speed up getting medical marijuana in patients’ hands sooner.
Patients can start buying the prescriptive amount from a licensed dispensary in child-resistant packaging. Anyone under 19 years old needs a designated caregiver to purchase and administer the drug. Both caregiver and minor must be residents of Alabama and registered with the state cannabis commission.
The commission’s next meeting on rules and regulations for Alabama’s medical cannabis program was scheduled for December 9 but was postponed. Their next meeting is scheduled for January 13.