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New Mexico Announces Medical Cannabis Expansion




New Mexico legislators agreed to add more qualifying conditions that can be treated with medical cannabis.

According to the New Mexico Department of Health, opioid dependence is the most notable condition that was added to the qualification list, as it was the top area of medical need recommended unanimously by a recent petition. Additionally, autism, Alzheimer’s disease and degenerative neurological disorders were also added.

“We need to explore and pursue every available means of responding to the health and wellness needs of our neighbors here in New Mexico,” Gov. Lujan Grisham said, according to the Department of Health. “Compassion must guide our decision-making. Today marks an important and long-overdue step forward after too many years of status quo.”

Additionally, Secretary Kunkel noted that this move will help further medical cannabis for patients across the state. “Adding these conditions to the Medical Cannabis Program provides medical providers new tools for relieving symptoms that may otherwise be difficult, if not impossible in some cases, to relieve through conventional means,” added Secretary Kunkel. “Thousands of New Mexicans may find relief from their symptoms through medical cannabis that they can’t get anywhere else.”

Unfortunately nystagmus, a condition that causes involuntary eye movement, was one condition that was considered but did not make the final vote. “As part of my review, I have read the Advisory Board’s recommendations and materials submitted,” the official statement reads. “The purpose of the Lynn and Erin Compassionate Use Act is to allow medical cannabis use for alleviating symptoms caused by debilitating medication conditions and their treatments. Below is a summary of petitions and recommendations submitted to the Department of Health with my final decision for each recommendation.”

New Mexico has been making some serious strides lately. Legislators recently decriminalized cannabis and legal cannabis is slated to be on the 2020 legislative calendar.