New York state broadens its medical cannabis law

The New York Department of Health is modifying its medical marijuana regulations to make it easier for patients in the state to access their medicine.

Under the first change, nurse practitioners will be permitted to recommend medical marijuana to patients beginning Nov. 30, Buffalo TV station WKBW reported. Previously, only physicians were allowed to write the recommendations.

To be allowed to write the recommendations, nurse practitioners, like physicians, will need to successfully complete a four-hour online course sanctioned by the health department, “Medical Use of Marijuana.” The course costs $249.

Health officials are also considering an amendment that would allow physicians’ assistants to recommend medical marijuana. But before being approved, the amendment must go through a 45-day comment period that also starts Nov. 30, according to WKBW. Officials are also considering whether to add chronic pain to the state’s list of qualifying conditions.

Through Nov. 7, there were 9,852 medical cannabis patients in New York state, and 739 physicians who were certified to write recommendations for them, according to the health department’s website.

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3 comments on “New York state broadens its medical cannabis law
  1. Lawrence Goodwin on

    Great news for patients, at least on its face. But many current patients in NY have complained very loudly about the price of non-smokeable medical cannabis products that are available, or between $500-$1,000 paid out-of-pocket every month depending on the “qualifying condition” (determined by arrogant anti-“marihuana” politicians and career bureaucrats). As someone who lives near Albany, the NY state capital, I see how the major obstacle to patient access—and the thriving medical cannabis market that entails—remains NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo and his health commissioner, Dr. Howard Zucker, both of whom are just as rigid on this public policy as New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie. Or even Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions. These men are all “marihuana smoker”-hating brothers from other mothers, and they will continue obstructing cannabis commerce for many more moons.

  2. Kevin Mahoney on

    Great news for New York. Lets get chronic pain on the approved conditions list, patients need it. Also, amazing progress by allowing nurse practitioners to have the ability to recommend medical cannabis after the 4 hour course. Lets implement this in all medical states that do not currently allow nurse practitioner recommendations.

    • howard on

      Right On Kevin, keep up the word, tell everyone you know and keep telling the news that MJ is needed all over the land to keep us informed, on the benefits of wellness from a totally natural product.

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