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Virginia Lawmakers Consider Amending Hemp Restriction Marijuana Bill To Protect Patient Access To CBD Products!

Virginia Lawmakers Consider Amending Hemp Restriction Marijuana Bill To Protect Patient Access To CBD Products!

Virginia Passed a Law in 2015 Establishing a Legal Shield Allowing Families to Possess Cbd Oils Derived from Cannabis for Medical Use without Worrying About Being Charged with A Crime Due to Cbd’s Association with Marijuana, at The Urging of Parents Whose Children Had Been Diagnosed with Severe Epilepsy.

The original rule limited the use of that legal defense to CBD, a chemical normally extracted from non-intoxicating hemp plants that is advertised as a treatment for aches and pains, insomnia, anxiety, and other maladies, but which was explicitly obtained to prevent or lessen seizures. The original 2015 law also set restrictions on THC, the psychoactive component of cannabis plants that can be found in both natural and manufactured forms and causes users to feel euphoric.

The only CBD drug now recognized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as secure and efficient for a particular medical purpose is the anti-seizure drug Epidiolex. Eight years ago, when Epidiolex was still three years away from FDA approval, several Virginia families testified before the General Assembly that the only thing that helped to reduce their children’s seizures was over-the-counter CBD oil. In response, state legislators said they would attempt to provide a legal means of enabling Virginia families to obtain CBD for therapeutic purposes.

The strict hemp regulation bill the General Assembly passed this year, according to Lisa Smith, a resident of the Northern Neck who supports Youngkin and was one of the mothers involved in the initial push to legalize CBD oil, threatens to reverse the assistance lawmakers provided to families like hers nearly ten years ago.

The 100-milliliter bottles of CBD oil Smith orders from Charlotte’s Web, a firm located in Colorado, are so large that they most likely infringe on the proposed law’s restriction that cannabis products have a maximum THC content of two milligrams per package.

I don’t want her to have to look for something different after using the same medicine for eight years with excellent outcomes, Smith said of her daughter Haley, who suffers from a type of epilepsy known as Dravet syndrome.

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Virginia Lawmakers Consider Amending Hemp Restriction Marijuana Bill To Protect Patient Access To CBD Products!

According to Smith, the bottles she receives have a total THC concentration of less than 0.3 percent and contain 216 milligrams of THC, the standard unit used to distinguish industrial hemp from marijuana. Although Charlotte’s Web products’ labels and website descriptions don’t exactly describe what’s inside, more detailed certificates of analysis are accessible on the site, which support Smith’s claim that the THC concentration would be higher than the threshold set forth in the proposed Virginia law. The business also sells CBD oils that are THC-free and have just 1.2 mg of THC per 30 ml bottle. An email inquiry for information regarding how Virginia’s proposal might impact Charlotte’s web operations in the state received no response.

The lawmakers who supported the hemp bill are now discussing revisions to try to allay Smith’s concerns after a flurry of opposition from her.

Sen. Emmett Hanger (R), who sponsored the hemp legislation in the Senate, stated in an interview that we want to remedy that.

According to Hanger, a larger issue is illustrated by some Virginians’ worries about possibly losing access to mainly uncontrolled cannabis goods.

With these products, a lot of people self-medicate, according to Hanger. However, a doctor ought to be involved in these matters. They can occasionally be strong medications of a sort that are not FDA-approved.

A carveout to the THC limits for CBD products is one idea being discussed, so long as they have a high-CBD, low-THC ratio, which only covers products unlikely to make users high from a standard dose. Hanger did not go into further detail on the specific amendments being considered to his bill, however.

Gov. Glenn Youngkin (R), has stated his support for the hemp legislation’s main objective of toughening up on unregulated hemp-derived products like delta-8, which contain enough THC to cause intoxicating effects but are openly sold throughout Virginia because they are technically not marijuana, is currently considering whether to sign it.

The details of the amendments the governor would suggest to the law were not made clear by Youngkin’s office.

According to Youngkin spokesperson Macaulay Porter, the administration is reviewing the bill’s final text and holding meetings with interested parties. The governor anticipates stricter enforcement as a result, helping to keep harmful alcoholic beverages off the shelf and out of Virginia’s children’s reach.

The hemp law has a Monday deadline for the governor to sign, veto, or suggest modifications.

We Have Major Seizures

As legislators expanded the list of medical conditions that could be treated with cannabis products, legalized the purchase of CBD oil, and expanded the program to allow actual marijuana, the initial form of state-sanctioned cannabis possession that was approved in 2015 gradually developed into the medical marijuana program Virginia has today. Although it’s no longer illegal to have a little amount of marijuana and you can cultivate up to four plants at home, medicinal dispensaries are still the only places where you can buy it completely legally in the state.

Virginians wishing to legally purchase marijuana or CBD would still have access to the state’s medical cannabis shops even if other companies stopped selling hemp products in the state to comply with the proposed law. To guarantee that consumers know exactly what they’re buying, those products are likewise subject to tougher restrictions and testing.

ALSO READ: Bipartisan Senators File Marijuana Bill To Ease Restrictions On Industrial Hemp Farmers!

Virginia Lawmakers Consider Amending Hemp Restriction Marijuana Bill To Protect Patient Access To CBD Products!

The medical marijuana program was established precisely to give Virginians access to safer, more controlled goods, according to supporters of the stricter THC regulations.

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Michelle Peace, an expert in cannabis-related research and a professor of forensic science at Virginia Commonwealth University, expressed sympathy for Smith’s situation. Yet, she claimed that considering the multiple negative effects Virginians have endured after consuming cannabis products including intoxicants, the issue of unregulated products is obvious.

In Virginia, hundreds of people often face risk from the uncontrolled market, according to Peace.

According to her, changing the law to allow products with greater THC opens the door to intoxication products and may cause misunderstanding for consumers who only want pure CBD.

In Virginia, consumers have access to a controlled market, according to Peace. The necessity to ship goods from other states is therefore eliminated.

Smith claimed that she is hesitant to transition to a different product offered by Virginia’s legally recognized dispensaries since it is unknown whether or not they would have the same effects on Haley as the medication she has been receiving in the mail from Charlotte’s Web.

According to Smith, it’s not like going from cherry to orange Tylenol. Due to her medical fragility, there are a lot of other concerns. Very severe seizures can result in hospitalization or even death.

Haley is 22 years old yet performs on a four-year-old level. According to Smith, the medical shops appear to be designed more for adult products than for medications that would be appropriate for someone with a child’s intelligence.

She stated of her kid, “I’m definitely not going to teach her how to vape anything.”

Smith said she agrees with the notion of taking action against businesspeople who benefit from the sale of hazardous or unregulated goods, but she and others feel caught off guard by the proposed rule.

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