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Gregoire Signs Kohl-Welles' Medical Marijuana Bill Into Law


Nug of the Month: Aug 2008
Gov. Chris Gregoire signed Senate Bill 5798 into law April 2, expanding access to medical marijuana for patients suffering from debilitating and terminal illnesses.

The bill was sponsored by Sen. Jeanne Kohl-Welles from the 36th District, who has long supported marijuana-law reform.

Under the new law, healthcare professionals can recommend medical marijuana to a patient based on their own judgment and discretion. Some of the ailments outlined include chemotherapy-related nausea and vomiting, AIDS wasting syndrome, epilepsy, acute or chronic glaucoma and some forms of intractable pain.

The law expands upon Initiative 682, which in 1998 permitted only physicians to prescribe marijuana for medicinal purposes. Now, other healthcare professionals, such as naturopaths, physicians' assistants, osteopath physicians' assistants and advanced nurse practitioners, can also authorize the use of the plant.

At a March 30 forum, Kohl-Welles said her endorsement stems from watching family members suffer first-hand from terminal diseases.

"We're talking about individuals who suffer grave medical conditions who are able to find some relief from marijuana, which is a natural plant," Kohl-Welles said at the forum. "Pain and suffering are not partisan."

During the 2011 legislative session, which will begin next January, Kohl-Welles intends to introduce a major medical cannabis bill.

NewsHawk: Ganjarden: 420 MAGAZINE ® - Medical Marijuana Publication & Social Networking
Source: Ballard News Tribune
Author: Rachel Solomon
Contact: Ballard News Tribune
Copyright: 2010 Robinson Communications Inc.
Website: Gregoire signs Kohl-Welles' medical marijuana bill into law
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