Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations
Medical Marijuana Rules Approved by Hawaii Governor
Hawaii Governor Ben Cayetano (D) has approved the state's new medical marijuana rules, allowing certain patients to possess up to three ounces of marijuana and grow up to seven marijuana plants, the Associated Press reports. The new regulations, which are slated to take effect on Dec. 28, will enable physicians to obtain a registration certificate for a patient with a "debilitating" disease, such as cancer or AIDS, to use marijuana to ease pain. Any other cultivation of marijuana is illegal under Hawaii law. Federal law prohibits marijuana even for medical purposes, but Department of Public Safety Director Ted Sakai said that Hawaii is "seeking to resolve that conflict" with the federal government. Nine states, including Hawaii, currently have laws legalizing medical marijuana, and the U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear arguments on the legality of the drug's use for pain relief purposes (Associated Press, 12/19).
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