Bill Proposes to Change Requirements for Obtaining Medical Marijuana Card

While the controversy of workers’ comp played out at the Capitol, Legislators touched on another hot topic of session – medical marijuana, as another bill aims to create more regulation and stricter guidelines for medical cannabis patients.

Republican Senator Jeff Essman’s Senate Bill 170 revises medical marijuana laws when obtaining a certificate for chronic pain. Senator Essmann’s bill would change the way patients are able to obtain a medical marijuana card.

Senator Essmann is proposing that after a physician recommends medical cannabis to treat severe or chronic pain, a state created, three doctor panel, will then review the recommendation, with a fee.
Opponents say it could cost around $250 to get a card under Senate Bill 170’s statutes.

Contingent on the panel’s decision the medical cannabis patient then would pay an additional licensing cost to obtain the actual medical marijuana card

“The existing law is vague and has a fairly low standard and it’s been widely abused by individuals, unethical doctors and these unethical traveling caravans that have resulted in a lot of people obtaining medical marijuana cards that I do not think the voters of Montana supported when they voted for that legislation in 2004,” says Senator Essmann, (R) Senate District 28.

Supporters view the bill as an attempt to create higher standards for physicians while medical cannabis patients feel the guidelines are too strict.

On Wednesday, a bill will be introduced to lawmakers that will repeal the Montana Medical Marijuana Act all together.

via : KFBB

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