Louisiana’s current medical cannabis law allows doctors to recommend marijuana for six different diseases, but there are some who say that still isn’t good enough.
According to lobbyist Tim Hit, the law currently allows doctors to recommend medical marijuana to patients with HIV, Aids, cancer, Crohn’s disease, muscular dystrophy and wasting disorder. However, Hitt says patients with PTSD and chronic pain do not qualify.
Hitt is part of a statewide lobbyist organization called Sensible Marijuana Policy for Louisiana. He says they’ll be in Baton Rouge the week of March 29th, pushing to have these patients added to the list.
According to him, PTSD and patients and chronic pain patients make up 70 percent of people seeking help from medical cannabis.
“People are desperate, with the opioid crisis that we’re in the middle of right now, they’re looking for alternatives to some of these medicines and cannabis is,” says Hitt. “It’s medicine, it’s from the Earth, it has a proven track record, and we’re just trying to get Louisiana up to speed.”
Hitt says with a medical marijuana dispensary possibly coming to Monroe, it’s especially important to make sure everyone is covered.
“LSU and Southern are actually growing the plants and they hope to have product ready around November actually,” says Hitt. “So Monroe is a candidate for one of the dispensaries, we’re just trying to find the right applicants at this time.”
Hitt says the current law is set to expire, but says he and other lobbyists are pushing to have it extended to 2025.
A medical marijuana forum is being held on Thursday, March 22nd at Tower Place on 19th Street in Monroe. It starts at 6:30 p.m.