Medical marijuana is rapidly gaining recognition as a legitimate treatment option for various medical conditions. With the legalization of marijuana sweeping across the United States, Louisiana’s medical marijuana program is also progressing. However, the process has been continually delayed by several terminological difficulties and a lack of a licensed infrastructure. This article’s goal is to give you all the information you need to make an informed decision about using marijuana for medicinal purposes in Louisiana.
The Use Of Marijuana Is Still Illegal On The Federal Level
Marijuana is classified as a Schedule l substance under federal law, making it illegal at the federal level. It is treated similarly to heroin, LSD, meth, ecstasy, and peyote as hazardous narcotics with no recognized medical value. Despite calls for the nationwide legalization of marijuana, federal law still prohibits its use. However, Louisiana has approved a law that protects patients, physicians, and suppliers, allowing individuals who meet the requirements to legally acquire marijuana at the state level.
Not All Illnesses Are Covered
Louisiana has restricted eligibility to prevent the possibility of systemic abuse. Medical marijuana was initially reserved for people with fatal illnesses and those who had seizures. The following conditions must be medically diagnosed to qualify for coverage:
- Crohn’s disease
- Unrelenting pain
- Multiple sclerosis
- Physical dystrophy
- Parkinson’s disease
- Profound muscle spasms
In addition, Louisiana passed legislation earlier this year to allow people with autism spectrum disorders access to marijuana if their mental state posed a substantial risk to them, their caregivers, and other people.
Physicians Can Only Recommend It
Legal drafting is extremely important because even a small error in wording can have far-reaching consequences. When the Louisiana Senate passed a measure legalizing medical marijuana in 2015, the phrase “prescribe” was used in the law. However, this violated a federal law that forbids doctors from prescribing controlled narcotics. It took over a year for the term to be changed to “recommend,” and many more years for regulations protecting manufacturers, sellers, and patients to be passed. If a licensed doctor does give a medical marijuana recommendation, it must be renewed every 90 days.
Universities Are Producing It
Currently, Louisiana State University and Southern University are the only locations where medical marijuana can be grown legally. This enables them to cultivate marijuana for research purposes as well as for medical users, which should lead to improved regulation in the future.
Smoking Or Vaping Medical Marijuana Is Not Permitted
To reduce the number of people who would abuse the new system, the state has outlawed the use of marijuana flowers. Instead, a range of different methods, including oils, chewables, patches, lotions, and oils, can be used to give THC and CBD.
Learn The Law
Before recreational marijuana becomes legal at the federal level, medical marijuana is most likely to do so. More research is uncovering the many benefits it can provide patients to aid them with their problems as societal stigmas surrounding it begins to fade. The use of medical marijuana in Louisiana is expected to increase over time. However, it is crucial to stay informed about what is and is not permitted to avoid any future issues. For instance, marijuana use can cause your application to be rejected if you have a job that requires federal clearance because it is still illegal.
If you are a patient who is currently using medical marijuana in Louisiana, it is important to keep track of the latest laws and regulations to ensure that you are using it lawfully and safely. This includes staying up-to-date on medical marijuana renewal Louisiana requirements, which are necessary to maintain legal access to the program’s benefits.
Despite being relatively new, the medical marijuana program in Louisiana has already shown promise in providing relief for patients with various medical conditions. With ongoing expansion and updates to the program’s guidelines, more patients may soon have access to this potentially life-changing treatment option.