Legislature passes, Gov. Cuomo will sign measure allowing patients suffering from certain debilitating conditions to access medical marijuana if their doctors recommend it
NEW YORK — The New York State Senate and Assembly gave final approval Friday to legislation that will allow people with certain debilitating conditions to access medical marijuana if their doctors recommend it. Gov. Andrew Cuomo is expected to sign the bill, which was revised yesterday to secure his signature.
The Compassionate Care Act will allow patients with qualifying medical conditions to register with the state to use medical marijuana with their physicians’ approval. The health commissioner may approve additional qualifying conditions. Registered patients will be allowed to obtain medical marijuana from “registered organizations” that are regulated and licensed by the state department of health.
Statement from Karen O’Keefe, director of state policies for the Marijuana Policy Project:
“Passage of this measure comes as a relief to thousands of seriously ill New Yorkers and their families. Medical marijuana can be an effective treatment option for a variety of debilitating conditions. For some patients, it is their only option.
“While the bill’s passage is a significant step forward, it leaves behind thousands of patients. We hope the governor’s staff promptly implements the measure and that the health department will approve additional qualifying conditions. Voters overwhelmingly agree that seriously ill people should have legal access to medical marijuana.”