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Pa. Health Secretary Approves Dry Leaf for Medical Marijuana Patients


HARRISBURG, Pa. — Big changes are coming to Pennsylvania’s medical marijuana program.

Pennsylvania Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine announced Monday she will approve the recommendations of the Medical Marijuana Advisory Board that includes allowing the sale of medical marijuana in dry leaf or flower form. It will also expand the list of qualifying conditions.

The decision means Pennsylvanians will soon be able to buy dried flower medical marijuana for vaporization. The law forbids residents from smoking it. Dry leaf marijuana is said to be a less expensive option for patients.

The Medical Marijuana Advisory Board made the recommendations last week.

Additionally, the number of qualifying medical conditions will be expanded from 17 to 21, including neurodegenerative disease, spastic disorders, and patients with a terminal illness whose life expectancy is one year or less.

Another recommendation included adding medical marijuana as addiction substitute therapy to reduce opioid use.

Dr. Levine said patients should be able to purchase dry leaf marijuana in dispensaries sometime this summer.

The Health Department said so far, more than 30,000 patients have registered to participate in the medical marijuana program, with more than 10,000 already receiving their identification cards and received medical marijuana at a dispensary.

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