After 15 months of nail-biting delays—and 17 years after the state decriminalized pot for patients—medical cannabis is finally available for legal sale. Who does it help? How does it work? Is this the crop that will replace sugar? And, if it is, who profits?
By Don Wallace with additional reporting by Lorin Eleni Gill
Published: 2017.10.11 08:55 AM
photo: courtesy of aloha green
Hannah Metsch was 7 years old when her mother, Shana, decided to give her medical marijuana. “We had heard about CBD, or cannabidiol,” says Shana, “but never dreamed of using it on our very young and medically fragile daughter.”
Hannah’s seizures had started shortly after birth. Consultations yielded a diagnosis of partial epilepsy and infantile spasms, and prescriptions for more than a dozen antiseizure medications. But they left her groggy and failed to slow the attacks, which take a toll on the developing brain; she was still having hundreds a day, ending up back in the hospital.
“We needed to do something different to save her life,” says Shana, a real estate agent on Kaua‘i. “We