A new expansion to the medical cannabis program in New Hampshire will allow more patients to be approved for medical cannabis treatment. However, some are disappointed, as an even more expansive cannabis bill just died before it could make it off the Senate floor.
According to The Associated Press for NPR, a new pair of bills that was just approved by the New Hampshire House will expand the list of qualifying conditions available to patients. The House voted last Wednesday to add insomnia and opioid use disorder as qualifying conditions that can be treated with medical cannabis if properly prescribed. There will still be a fair amount of restrictions around cannabis availability for those with opioid use disorder due to its sensitive nature, but it is still possible for individuals to obtain a prescription.
Still, some advocates for medical cannabis availability in the state are disappointed that the earlier version of one of the bills was vetoed, because it would have also added anxiety and Lyme Disease to the list. Despite the fact that there is anecdotal evidence that these conditions can be treated with medical cannabis, New Hampshire ultimately decided to not include these as qualifying conditions for medical cannabis. Additionally, the Senate also voted against making medical cannabis available for any condition a doctor approves. This would have more than significantly expanded the program.
Lastly, the New Hampshire Senate also just blocked a bill that would have recreationally legalized cannabis, another major blow to those who support legalization in the state. While New Hampshire has made some positive strides in 2019, including giving lock boxes to parents who use medical cannabis and expanding parts of its medical cannabis program, lawmakers also recently halted a bill that would allow home cultivation. While 2020 will see a bigger medical cannabis program in New Hampshire, it doesn’t look like the state is moving toward legalizing recreational cannabis just yet.