Kids suffering from severe seizure-causing conditions and diseases will be able to access medical cannabis soon thanks to a law signed by Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn on Sunday.
Illinois already has a medical cannabis program in place, but seizures did not qualify a patient for a medical cannabis recommendation. Will the new bill, children as well as adults will have increased access to the plant.
“This new law will help alleviate the suffering of many adults and children across the state,” Quinn said in release. “Epilepsy is a debilitating condition, and this much-needed relief will help to reduce some of its symptoms for those who endure seizures.”
The new law starts in January and allows the parents of children suffering from severe seizure disorders to apply for a medical cannabis card from the state. The cannabis can not be smoked.
Politicians on both sides of the aisle have championed the new law. Republican Jim Durkin, a co-sponsor of the bill, says he was inspired by a child in his district named Hugh who has battled epilepsy for years.
“His parents, Bob and Kelly, want to provide their son with as much relief as possible,” he told the Huffington Post. “Unfortunately, traditional medications and methods have not worked.”
Access won’t be granted until January, giving the state Department of Public Health time to write and approve new regulations surrounding the law. Adults suffering from seizures can begin applying for access in September, officials say.
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