A Senate committee voted to allow cancer patients to use an oil derived from the cannabis plant – a medication that can already be used, legally, in patients with epilepsy.  Studies suggest cannabidiol may help to fight breast, colon, brain, lung and other cancers while reducing the side effects of conventional chemotherapy.

Full Report: http://wvtf.org/post/state-lawmakers-debate-medical-marijuana#stream/0

Here’s the Bill information we use Virginia as an example of the rapid changes happening in legislatures and committees countrywide

SENATE BILL NO. 343
Offered January 13, 2016
Prefiled January 11, 2016

http://lis.virginia.gov/cgi-bin/legp604.exe?161+ful+SB343

A BILL to amend and reenact §§ 18.2-250.1 and 54.1-3408.3 of the Code of Virginia, relating to possession or distribution of marijuana for medical purposes; cancer.

The relevant paragraphs are as follows

C. In any prosecution under this section involving marijuana in the form of cannabidiol oil or THC-A oil as those terms are defined in § 54.1-3408.3, it shall be an affirmative defense that the individual possessed such oil pursuant to a valid written certification issued by a practitioner in the course of his professional practice pursuant to § 54.1-3408.3 for treatment or to alleviate the symptoms of (i) the individual’s intractable epilepsy or cancer or (ii) if such individual is the parent or legal guardian of a minor, such minor’s intractable epilepsy or cancer. If the individual files the valid written certification with the court at least 10 days prior to trial and causes a copy of such written certification to be delivered to the attorney for the Commonwealth, such written certification shall be prima facie evidence that such oil was possessed pursuant to a valid written certification.

§ 54.1-3408.3. Certification for use of cannabidiol oil or THC-A oil to treat intractable epilepsy or to treat cancer.

A. As used in this section:

“Cannabidiol oil” means a processed Cannabis plant extract that contains at least 15 percent cannabidiol but no more than five percent tetrahydrocannabinol, or a dilution of the resin of the Cannabis plant that contains at least 50 milligrams of cannabidiol per milliliter but not more than five percent tetrahydrocannabinol.

“THC-A oil” means a processed Cannabis plant extract that contains at least 15 percent tetrahydrocannabinol acid but not more than five percent tetrahydrocannabinol, or a dilution of the resin of the Cannabis plant that contains at least 50 milligrams of tetrahydrocannabinol acid per milliliter but not more than five percent tetrahydrocannabinol.

B. A practitioner of medicine or osteopathy licensed by the Board of Medicine in the course of his professional practice may issue a written certification for the use of cannabidiol oil or THC-A oil for treatment or to alleviate the symptoms of a patient’s intractable epilepsy or for treatment or to alleviate the symptoms of a patient’s cancer.

C. The written certification shall be on a form provided by the Office of the Executive Secretary of the Supreme Court developed in consultation with the Board of Medicine. Such written certification shall contain the name, address, and telephone number of the practitioner, the name and address of the patient issued the written certification, the date on which the written certification was made, and the signature of the practitioner. Such written certification issued pursuant to subsection B shall expire no later than one year after its issuance unless the practitioner provides in such written certification an earlier expiration.

D. No practitioner shall be prosecuted under § 18.2-248 or 18.2-248.1 for dispensing or distributing cannabidiol oil or THC-A oil for the treatment or to alleviate the symptoms of a patient’s intractable epilepsy or for the treatment or to alleviate the symptoms of a patient’s cancer pursuant to a written certification issued pursuant to subsection B. Nothing in this section shall preclude the Board of Medicine from sanctioning a practitioner for failing to properly evaluate or treat a patient’s medical condition or otherwise violating the applicable standard of care for evaluating or treating medical conditions.