Georgia has allowed patients suffering from severe seizures and other illnesses to use cannabis oil since 2015. But because the state doesn't allow in-state cultivation, the roughly 8,400 people on the program's registry risk defying federal law by transporting the drug across state lines.
Advocates hailed the medical marijuana expansion, but the measure includes significant hurdles before cannabis oil is manufactured and distributed in the state.
Six private companies can grow medical marijuana, but no dispensaries will be allowed until a state board licenses them.
Pharmacies can provide medical marijuana oil to patients, but few pharmacies are likely to participate because doing so could jeopardize their federal permission to sell other drugs. And two proposed university-run marijuana programs will be dependent on federal approval.