Ohio’s State Medical Board received nine petitions to add ten qualifying conditions to the state’s medical-marijuana program. Submissions for new conditions are received every year and must include letters of support from physicians. Petitioners must also submit evidence that marijuana can treat or alleviate the ailment.
The most recent submissions include degenerative disc disease, bipolar disorder, depression, lupus, anxiety, insomnia, opioid use disorder, and Gilbert’s syndrome. After rejecting it last year, the board may review whether to include autism spectrum disorder.
To qualify for an Ohio medical marijuana card, residents must be 18 years or older. People under the age of 18 must have an assigned caregiver at least 21 years of age. Applicants then must provide proof of Ohio residency, meet with a certified Ohio Marijuana Card doctor, and be affected by one of the qualifying conditions:
Lawmakers are currently debating legislation to allow physicians to recommend marijuana for any patient, regardless of condition, as long as they believe it would alleviate their symptoms.
The State Medical Board will meet in February 2022 to review the requests. The final decision is expected to be announced in the summer.
The Coalition to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol is also collecting signatures to legalize adult-use cannabis in Ohio. If the advocacy group is successful, Ohop residents should prepare by stocking up on their favorite cannabis supplies.
Ohio’s medical marijuana program has gone through improvements since its inception. Medical doctors and Republican Rep. Steve Huffman proposed the changes to the program last November.
Huffman’s proposal presented a goal of one dispensary for every 1,000 of the first 300,000 registered patients and adding more dispensaries as needed. The measure would also move the regulation of medical marijuana dispensaries from the pharmacy board to a new Division of Marijuana Control in the Commerce Department.
The proposal also defines two levels of licensed cultivators – those who would cultivate up to 75,000 square feet, the others up to 20,000 square feet – and seeks to allow them to expand their facilities.
The proposal also stipulates that a physician could recommend marijuana as a treatment for any medical condition if the physician determines the patient would “reasonably be expected” to find relief or benefit from it.