NJ lawmakers consider expansion of medical marijuana program

New Jersey lawmakers are considering some changes for the state’s medical marijuana program.

One Assembly committee bill would add post-traumatic stress disorder to the list of debilitating medical conditions that qualify a patient to receive medical marijuana.

PTSD is poorly managed with a traditional pharmaceutical approach, said Ken Wolski, who leads the Coalition for Medical Marijuana in New Jersey.

“In the states and in the foreign countries where marijuana therapy is allowed for post-traumatic stress disorder, marijuana shows tremendous promise in the management of this very difficult to treat condition,” he said.

A second bill would allow the state’s alternative treatment centers to share excess inventory to meet the needs of patients.

Patients who sign up for one alternative treatment center where the strain of the pot they need is not available now have to go through the Health Department for permission to visit another center.

“They say that sometimes one facility may have had a crop failure and the product is just not available at that facility or certain strains of the product that they’re looking for is not available in Montclair, New Jersey, but it may be available in Egg Harbor, New Jersey,” said Wolski.

Gov. Chris Christie, who has said he’s open to changes in the medical marijuana program to help people who are truly sick, is concerned that expansion would open the door to legalization of pot, which he opposes.

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