September 18, 2018

Louisiana MMJ Regulators Loosen Limits on Number of Patients Docs Can Recommend

September 18, 2018
MMJ patients pressured to get the cap expanded to avoid bottleneck in November when program expected to roll out.

Louisiana’s State Board of Medical Examiners voted 8-1 to remove a cap established in 2016 that had limited physicians to 100 medical marijuana patients each.

MMJ patients themselves as well as physicians pressured to get the cap expanded in order to avoid a bottleneck in November 2018, when Louisiana’s medical marijuana program is expected to roll out.

Some doctors already reached their patient cap months ago, and have had to start waiting lists.

Dr. Victor Chou, who opened a clinic in Baton Rouge, reached his patient cap months ago and said hundreds of people are already on his waiting list.

“Many of them feel locked out because they either cannot find physicians or the physicians they find already have hit the 100-patient limit,” said Dr. Victor Chou, according to the Associated Press.

Only 48 doctors have submitted applications for a required state permit to recommend MMJ; so far only 31 have been approved.

Even after the decision to lift the patient cap, concerns are still rampant among those in need of medical cannabis.

With such a low number of recommending physicians, even without a patient cap, many worry there will still not be enough doctors available.

One of the only two approved grow sites in Louisiana anticipates that there could be up to 100,000 patients, especially after lawmakers added qualifying conditions earlier this year, which included glaucoma, severe muscle spasms, intractable pain, post-traumatic stress disorder, and Parkinson’s disease.

With a narrower 5-4 vote, the board that oversees physicians also removed a restriction requiring patients to revisit their doctors every 90 days to renew their recommendation.

Under a law passed in 2014 and tweaked twice since then, Louisiana is allowing therapeutic cannabis to treat a long list of diseases and disorders, such as cancer, a severe form of cerebral palsy, seizure disorders, epilepsy, and muscular dystrophy.


Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on reddit
Recent & Related Posts


Recent & Related Posts
Mark Willey

Missouri Green Doctors

Since voters passed Amendment 2 with an overwhelming majority in 2018, Missouri has become a new medical marijuana landscape and has seen approximately 50,000 patients

Read More »
Ryan Quinones

Hemp Missouri

Missourians have been growing hemp as a staple crop dating back to the early-nineteenth century. American farmers grew hemp all over the country and manufactured

Read More »
Missouri Sneate Bill 491 took decriminalization one step further in the Show-Me-State.
Brodie Kush

Missouri Senate Bill 491

Missouri is now a legal medical marijuana state, but six years ago in 2014, the Missouri legislature was able to pass SB 491 a modified,

Read More »
Ryan Quinones

Missouri Marijuana Laws

Over the past couple years, Missouri has been rapidly amping up its efforts to overturn drug war era policies and replace them with a regulated 

Read More »
John Payne

Missouri Marijuana Legalization

11 states have legalized recreational marijuana, and another 22 states, plus the District of Columbia, have legalized medical cannabis. So,  here’s where things stand here

Read More »