Georgia last year legalized a limited form of medical marijuana, but efforts are now underway to not only expand the law but significantly boost who would qualify to use it.
At least 23 states, plus the District of Columbia and Guam, offer some form of legalized use of marijuana for medical purposes. Georgia this year created a way to protect some people from criminal prosecution for having a limited form of cannabis oil in their possession to treat severe forms of eight illnesses including cancer, Parkinson’s disease and epilepsy.
But House Bill 722 would bring that list of eligible illnesses to at least 17, including post-traumatic stress syndrome, Tourette’s syndrome and Alzheimer’s.
What diseases or disorders are covered by the law?
- Cancer, when the disease has reached end stage or the treatment produces related wasting illness, recalcitrant nausea and vomiting.
- Seizure disorders related to diagnosis of epilepsy or trauma-related head injuries.
- Severe or end-stage amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (also known as ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease).
- Severe or end-stage multiple sclerosis.
- Severe or end-stage Parkinson’s disease.
- Severe or end-stage sickle cell disease.
- Crohn’s disease.
- Mitochondrial disease.
What diseases or disorders would additionally be covered if the law is expanded?
- Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).
- Tourette’s syndrome.
- Epidermolysis bullosa.
- Terminal illness with less than a year’s life expectancy (including severe pain, nausea and severe wasting).
- Post-traumatic stress disorder.
- Intractable pain.
- Autism spectrum disorder.
- Alzheimer’s disease.
Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.
Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.