Arkansas Readies Medical Marijuana Law for 2016

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While several states are gearing up for November with eyes on the legalization prize, Arkansas is getting ready to push forward with an initiative for the 2016 ballot.

The group backing the initiative, called The 2016 Arkansas Compassionate Care Act, is touting this as one of the most liberal and comprehensive medical cannabis bills written, and it does appear to be quite thorough.

The qualifying medical conditions in the state of Arkansas, should this bill pass, will include:

  • Adiposis Dolorosa (Dercum’s Disease)
  • Alzheimer’s Disease or the agitation thereof
  • Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)
  • Anorexia
  • Arnold-Chiari Malformation
  • Arthritis
  • Asthma
  • Attention Deficit Disorder/Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADD/ADHD)
  • Autism
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Bulemia
  • Cancer
  • Causalgia
  • Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyneuropathy (CIDP)
  • Chronic Insomnia
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
  • Complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS)—Types I and II
  • Crohn’s Disease
  • Dystonia
  • Emphysema
  • Fibrous Dysplasia
  • Fibromyalgia
  • General Anxiety Disorder
  • Glaucoma
  • Hepatitis C
  • Positive Status for Human Immunodeficiency Virus and/or Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (HIV/AIDS)
  • Hydrocephalus
  • Hydromyelia
  • Interstitial Cystitis
  • Lupus
  • Migraines
  • Myasthenia Gravis
  • Myoclonus
  • Nail-Patella Syndrome
  • Neurofibromatosis
  • Parkinson’s Disease
  • Posterior Lateral Sclerosis(PLS)
  • Post-Concussion Syndrome
  • Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  • Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD)
  • Residual Limb and Phantom Pain
  • Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS)
  • Sjogren’s Syndrome
  • Spinocerebellar Ataxia (SCA)
  • Spinal Cord Injury and/or disease (including but not limited to Arachnoiditis)
  • Syringomelia
  • Tarlov Cysts
  • Tourette’s Syndrome
  • Traumatic Brain Injury
  • Ulcerative Colitis;
  • or the treatment of any of these conditions.

Additionally, any chronic or debilitating disease or condition that causes (or whose treatment causes)

  • cachexia or Wasting Syndrome
  • peripheral neuropath
  •  intractable pain, which is pain that has not responded to ordinary medications, treatment, or surgical measures for more than three (3) months
  • severe nausea
  • seizures, including those characteristic of Epilepsy
  • severe and persistent muscle spasms, including those characteristic of Multiple Sclerosis

Additional medical conditions or treatments may be added to the list in the future as well. Those who have been diagnosed by a physician with a qualifying medical condition may possess up to 2.5 ounces of cannabis. Those who qualify for hardship cultivation certificates may grow up 10 cannabis plants, five of which must be under a foot tall.

The law also provides for cannabis cultivation by caregivers and the establishment of non-profit Cannabis Care Centers, which will be allowed to transfer cannabis to legal patients, caregivers, and other cannabis care centers. Those care centers are required to donate cannabis to a state-run hardship program (up to 1% of their gross revenue), ensuring that those who are too sick to grow their own will be able to afford their medication.

The full bill can be read here. It is currently awaiting approval from the State Attorney General. You can like Arkansans for Compassionate Care on Facebook for updates.

For previous Ladybud coverage of Arkansas’ fight for medical cannabis, click here!