Tennessee’s House Criminal Justice Committee has advanced the medical cannabis measure but not before including some significant changes. According to a Tennessean report, the committee removed chronic pain and nausea from the qualifying conditions list and eliminated the provision allowing patients to obtain recommendations from physicians in other legal states.
The measure would not create a comprehensive medical cannabis program. It would only prevent patients with a doctor’s note from being arrested and prosecuted for cannabis possession; although police officers would still have the discretion to make an arrest. Under an amendment included in the committee-approved legislation, patients would need to obtain and carry a note from an in-state doctor in order to possess cannabis. The measure passed the committee 9-2.
The bill still includes 15 specific qualifying conditions, including:
cancer HIV and AIDS hepatitis C amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or Lou Gehrig’s Disease post-traumatic stress disorder Alzheimer’s disease severe arthritis inflammatory bowel disease Crohn’s disease ulcerative colitis multiple sclerosis Parkinson’s disease schizophrenia or a number of chronic or debilitating diseases
The reforms are opposed members of the state law enforcement community