Starting Thursday, June 10, Washington residents with terminal or debilitating medical conditions will have better access to getting authorized to use medical marijuana, a prominent Democratic legislator has announced.
Washington’s newest improvement on the medical marijuana program expands the number of health care providers who are legally allowed to recommend medical marijuana to patients, according to its sponsor, state Senator Jeanne Kohl-Welles (D-Seattle).
Until now, only medical doctors could legally authorize patients to use cannabis medicinally in Washington State. Senate Bill 5798, Kohl-Welles, now extends the ability to authorize the medical use of marijuana to other licensed health professionals who are authorized to prescribe controlled substances.
Professionals who may now authorize medical marijuana use include naturopathic doctors, advanced registered nurse practitioners, physician assistants and osteopathic physician assistants.
“Many patients rely on medical professionals other than MDs and ODs,” Kohl-Welles said. “To remain committed to Washington voters’ long commitment to medical marijuana for qualifying patients, we must allow additional medical professionals to recommend medical marijuana.”