By Steve Elliott
The Pennsylvania Senate on Tuesday voted 40-7 to approve a bill that would make it legal for seriously ill patients to use marijuana to treat their conditions with recommendations from their doctors. The bill will now go to the House for consideration.
SB 3, sponsored by Sen. Mike Folmer (R-Lebanon), would allow qualified patients to obtain medical marijuana from a limited number of licensed, regulated dispensaries throughout the state.
Smoking would not be permitted under the restrictive language of the bill, but patients could consume marijuana in edible form, and patients with certain conditions could consume it through vaporization. Patients under the age of 18 would be required to have parental consent in order to take part in the program.
Unfortunately, home cultivation would also not be allowed under the bill, depriving many fixed-income patients of an economical way to provide their own medicine.
Pennsylvanians suffering from cancer, seizures, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, cachexia/wasting syndrome, Parkinson's disease, traumatic brain injury and postconcussion syndrome, multiple sclerosis, spinocerebellara ataxia (SCA), post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), severe fibromyalgia, HIV/AIDS, glaucoma, Crohn’s disease, diabetes, and chronic pain would be eligible for the program with a recommendation from their doctor.