dan morhaim

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Maryland: Panel Works Toward Final Medical Marijuana Rules

MarylandMedicalMarijuana

By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

A Maryland state panel on Tuesday worked on the final details to create a medical marijuana system from scratch, but a few points remain unresolved as the commission moves toward next week's deadline.

The Maryland Medical Marijuana Commission on Wednesday released a second draft of regulations to create the program, reports Erin Cox at The Baltimore Sun. The 81 pages of rules were reworked after the first draft came under fire at a public hearing last month.

Among the many changes in the second draft was removal of a provision that would have effectively banned medical marijuana growers or dispensaries within Baltimore city limits.

The panel also decided to create a digital registry of medical marijuana patients, in an effort to assure only patients receive cannabis. It also tweaked the rules about how patients with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can access the herb.

But still missing from the revisions are details about how much patients and distributors will pay to participate in the program.

The Maryland Legislature passed a medical marijuana law earlier this year which allows for up to 15 growers and about 100 dispensaries across the state. It is up to the Medical Marijuana Commission to decide how to implement that law.

Maryland: House Passes Medical Marijuana Bill

MarylandMedicalMarijuana

By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

The Maryland House of Delegates on Monday overwhelmingly approved House Bill 881, whicht would allow specially licensed physicians in the state to authorize patients with debilitating medical conditions to use marijuana.

The bill, which was written in response to growing public support for the medicinal use of cannabis, now goes to the Maryland Senate, where supporters are optimistic about its chances, reports Michael Dresser at The Baltimore Sun.

The legislation, which passed the House on a 127-9 vote, would replace a medical marijuana system that is almost universally regarded as a complete failure, and which hasn't helped any patients at all. That system restricted medicinal cannabis use to patients seeking care at academic medical centers, but none of the centers agreed to participate (surprise, surprise, since they receive federal funding).

"This is a matter of life and death for our people," said Del. Cheryl Glenn (D-Baltimore), whose medical marijuana bill was consolidated with one sponsored by Del. Dan K. Morhaim (D-Baltimore County), who is a physician.

The lead sponsor of the bill was changed from Morhaim to Glenn, because the state's medical marijuana commission is named after Glenn's late mother. "This was a real exercise of love and caring," Glenn said.

Maryland: House of Delegates Advances Medical Marijuana Bill

MarylandMarijuanaLeaf

By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Last year, the Maryland Legislature passed a completely useless medical marijuana law which limited distribution to a small number of approved academic medical centers. None of those centers, surprise surprise, were willing to participate, so patients were still left without any safe access. Now, legislators are looking to fix the law to help patients actually obtain cannabis. On Saturday, the House gave preliminary approval to a bill that would increase safe access to medical marijuana.

The House of Delegates on Monday plans to vote on a bill by Del. Dan K. Morhaim (D-Baltimore County) which would loosen its current law and replace the non-functional system created last year with one that works, reports Michael Dresser at The Baltimore Sun.

"The important thing to recognize is that there are thousands of Marylanders who could be helped in the short and long term," said Morhaim. "We're missing a tremendous economic opportunity to exploit this plant and use it in an intelligent, properly scientific, research way."

Lawmakers heard extensive testimony this year about the therapeutic benefits of cannabis to patients with epilepsy, the side effects of chemotherapy, auto-immune disorders and other medical conditions. The bill would allow physicians to authorize patients to use medical marijuana outside the medical center setting.

Maryland: Lawmakers Vow Workable Medical Marijuana Program This Year

MarylandMarijuanaFlag

By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

A bipartisan group of Maryland lawmakers on Friday vowed to pass legislation this year that will create a workable medical marijuana program in the state, 34 years after the idea was first proposed in the General Assembly.

Delegates Cheryl D. Glenn (D-Baltimore) and Dan K. Morhaim (D-Baltimore County), sponsors of two bills that would replace legislation passed last year which is now widely regarded as a failure, said they would combine their two bills into a single measure, reports Michael Dresser at The Baltimore Sun.

"We're going to get a bill passed this year," said Glenn, adding that Maryland should join 20 other states which give suffering patients the option to access cannabis, which is considered a Schedule I prohibited drug at the federal level.

The Maryland Legislature last year passed, and Gov. Martin O'Malley signed, a badly written medical marijuana bill which restricted its distribution to academic medical centers. Since then, unsurprisingly, none of the state's medical centers has volunteered to operate such a program, meaning serious ill Marylanders still have no safe access to cannabis.

Some pain experts told a legislative work group that marijuana is safe and effective in relieving symptoms of epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, the side effects of cancer treatment, and other conditions.

Maryland: Medical Marijuana Bill Receives Final Approval from House of Delegates

Maryland: Medical Marijuana Bill Receives Final Approval from House of DelegatesBroadly supported proposal would allow academic medical research centers to provide medical marijuana to patients with serious illnesses

By Steve Elliott
Hemp News

A bill that could allow Maryland citizens with serious illnesses to obtain medical marijuana legally via state-regulated programs took an important step toward becoming law today when the Maryland House of Delegates voted 108-28 to send it to the Senate, where it is also expected to pass.

“People who use medical marijuana to treat illnesses like cancer and multiple sclerosis shouldn’t have to resort to the illicit market to obtain doctor-recommended medicine,” said Dan Riffle, deputy director of government relations for the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP). “States around the nation are successfully implementing programs that provide patients with safe, legal, and reliable access to medical marijuana.”

HB 1101, introduced by Del. Dan Morhaim (D-Baltimore), an emergency room physician, would create a commission through which academic medical research centers could apply to operate medical marijuana programs. The programs would provide patients with marijuana grown by the federal government or state-licensed growers regulated by the commission.

Maryland: Medical Marijuana Push Begins

Maryland: Medical Marijuana Push BeginsBy Steve Elliott
Hemp News

Delegate Cheryl Glenn (D-Baltimore) wants Maryland patients who need medical marijuana to have safe access to it. Glenn held a Thursday news conference to discuss a bill which would allow the distribution of medicinal cannabis to patients with chronic or debilitating medical conditions through compassion centers.

Florida stockbroker Irvin Rosenfeld, one of four surviving federal medical marijuana patients, is expected to deliver remarks during the event, reports WBAL.

Rosenfeld still receives 300 pre-rolled joints from the federal government each month as part of the Compassionate Investigative New Drug program, as he has for almost 30 years. The IND program stopped taking on new patients during the George H.W. Bush Administration, when it became clear that hundreds of AIDS patients would be eligible.

Glenn has already introduced the medical marijuana legislation. Baltimore County Delegate Dan Morhaim, a physician, has also introduced a two bills this session.

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