A Utah legislative committee has given approval to legislation that would allow research on medical cannabis without federal approval.
Utah's House Health and Human Services committee unanimously passed House Bill 130
"This is the first step in what I think is the right policy direction for this state," says State Represenative Brad Daw (R), the bill's sponsor in the House (it's sponsored by Senator Evan Vickers in the Senate).
Specifically, the proposal:
allows a person to possess cannabis, a cannabinoid product, and an expanded cannabinoid product and to distribute the cannabis, a cannabinoid product, or an expanded cannabinoid product to a patient pursuant to an institutional review board-approved study; and
allows a person conducting an institutional review board-approved study to import and distribute cannabis, a cannabinoid product, and an expanded cannabinoid product under certain circumstances.
Although Daw says that the state needs to study whether or not it's an effective medicine, proponents of medical cannabis are frustrated with the decision. They believe that there is plenty of research to prove its medical use, and want the state to expand upon a law passed in 2014 that allows for the medical use of low-THC, high-CBD cannabis oil, but only for those with epilepsy to allow full-plant use (as well as THC), and to greatly expand the list of qualifying conditions.
Karen Buchi, a pediatrician who oversees a cannabis and opioid task force, told the committee that university researchers are currently studying marijuana under federally approved licenses, and that the legislation wouldn't change how they operate in any many. This, of course, further frustrates medical cannabis advocates, who see the move as being an ineffective one.
The full text of the law can be found by clicking here