In: Criminal Defense

Expanded Medical Marijuana Access in Texas

Texans suffering from PTSD and cancer now have access to low-level THC medical marijuana following the passing of the bill that went into effect on September 1, 2021. This new law expands medical marijuana access based on the medical cannabis program approved in 2015. Even with these new provisions, medical marijuana laws in Texas are still restrictive and can be quite confusing. Here’s what you need to know.

Who’s Eligible?

The new law now permits people with the following conditions to have medical marijuana access: (ARE WE SURE ON THESE. I AM ASSUMING HUNTINTON, parkinsons are listed as an incurable neurodegenerative disease???)

  • Intractable epilepsy
  • Cancer
  • PTSD
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Autism
  • ALS
  • Chronic traumatic encephalopathy
  • Huntington’s disease
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Alzheimer’s disease

Patients must also be permanent Texas residents, and while there are no age restrictions, patients below 18 years must have a legal guardian. House lawmakers agreed to increase the THC cap to 5% and include chronic pain in the covered conditions, but Senate members removed these additional provisions.

Which Marijuana Products Are Allowed?

In the Lone Star State, eligible patients can only utilize low-THC marijuana, the part of the plant that gives psychological effects and the feeling of being high. The THC limit has now been raised from 0.5% to 1%. Patients can consume marijuana in various ways, such as through oils, eating edibles, swallowing capsules, but not smoking.

What’s The Prescription Policy?

Eligible patients can access medical marijuana through the Compassionate Use Program. This means that they can’t ask their primary doctor or general practitioner for a medical marijuana prescription. They need to go to a certified doctor that specializes in their medical condition.

The doctor must then check the patient and determine that their risk of using low-THC medical marijuana is reasonable due to its potential benefits. Next, patients must get a second opinion that must agree with the assessment of the first doctor before they can be listed in the compassionate use registry database.

It is vital to note, however, that only doctors that specialize in your particular medical condition and belong to the Texas Compassionate Use Registry can evaluate whether you are eligible for medical marijuana access. The thing is, only 181 doctors in the state are registered.

Where Can You Buy Medical Marijuana?

When the Compassionate Use Act was passed in 2015, lawmakers required the Department of Public Safety (DPS) to give licenses to only three dispensaries. But there are still not enough dispensaries, which poses an issue for those who live far away from these dispensaries.

You must pick up your medical marijuana at a licensed dispensary or have them delivered to your home, creating a barrier for many patients. For instance, if you suddenly run out of it and need it immediately, you simply can’t walk to the next street to get your prescription filled.

Consult with an Experienced Frisco, TX, Drug Crime Attorney Today

If you’re facing a drug crime charge or have any questions about drugs laws in Texas, please don’t hesitate to contact the Law Office of Brent D. Bowen. You can discuss your case with our experienced Frisco, TX, drug crime attorney during a free case review by sending us an online message or calling 940-222-2488.