Medical Cannabis Bill Signed by Gov. Deal

Rep. Allen Peake issued the following press release after the signing of SB 16, which increased those eligible for medical cannabis:

State Representative Allen Peake (R-Macon) announced that Senate Bill 16 was signed into law by Governor Nathan Deal on Tuesday, May 9, 2017. SB 16, which was sponsored in the House by Rep. Peake, will expand Georgia’s medical cannabis oil program by adding six illnesses to the list of qualifying medical conditions to allow those patients to legally possess a maximum of 20 fluid ounces of cannabis oil with a maximum of 5 percent THC in Georgia.

“With Governor Deal’s signature today, Georgia’s medical cannabis program takes another positive step forward,” said Rep. Peake. “As of today, 1,738 citizens and 354 doctors are registered with Georgia’s Low THC Oil Registry program, and I’m confident that the addition of six conditions to this very successful program will allow even more hurting Georgians with debilitating illnesses to have a ray of hope for a better quality of life. I’m grateful to my colleagues, Speaker David Ralston and Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle for their continued support in getting this bill to Gov. Deal’s desk. My hope is that in 2018 we can fill the gaping hole that still remains and provide legal access to medical cannabis oil here in our state with a safe, lab tested product produced within our own borders. The job will not be finished until we accomplish this task.”

SB 16 will add the following illnesses to the list of qualifying medical conditions to be able to legally possess cannabis oil in Georgia: Tourette’s syndrome when diagnosed as severe; autism spectrum disorder when the patient is at least 18-years-old and severe autism when the patient is under 18-years-old; Epidermolysis Bullosa; Alzheimer’s disease when diagnosed as severe or end stage; AIDS when diagnosed as severe or end stage; peripheral neuropathy when diagnosed as severe or end stage; and hospice patients that have been authorized by their physicians to use medical cannabis oil.

SB 16 will also allow reciprocity of medical cannabis registration cards issued by other states if the medical cannabis oil meets Georgia’s legal standards, so long as the individual has not been present in the state longer than 45 days. In addition, SB 16 will remove the eligibility requirement that individuals must reside within the State of Georgia for at least one year to qualify for the registry, thus permitting individuals to immediately use cannabis oil upon moving to Georgia. Furthermore, SB 16 will require physicians to semiannually report certain information, including THC levels used in treatment.

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