by Kerry Langan and Laura Harshbarger, Esqs., Bond, Schoeneck & King, Syracuse
With the July 2014 enactment of the Compassionate Care Act, New York became the 23rd state to legalize medical marijuana.
The law creates a medical marijuana program for individuals suffering from severe, debilitating or life-threatening conditions such as cancer, Parkinson’s disease and epilepsy, among others.
The goal is to ensure that medical marijuana is available for certified patients with “serious conditions” and is administered in a manner that protects the public health and safety. The New York State Department of Health will certify physicians to administer marijuana, register organizations to provide the drug, issue identification cards to qualifying individuals, establish the list of serious conditions and regulate the price of the drug. This program is expected to be up and running within the next 18 months.
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