‘It’s not like I’m asking for anything new. I just need my medicine.’ Liability issue clouds access to medical pot

‘It’s not like I’m asking for anything new. I just need my medicine.’ Liability issue clouds access to medical pot

Sun Journal | February 26, 2011 | By Douglas Rooks

The medical marijuana law passed by voters in 2009 was supposed to create greater access to the drug for those suffering from a lengthy list of illnesses. It replaced a 1999 law, also enacted at referendum, that made it legal to possess marijuana as medicine but offered no system for patients to obtain it.

More than a year after the vote, and two months after the new registration system took effect, patients are still struggling to find doctors willing to write medical certificates, as is now required. And some patients are worse off than before.

One of them is Nicholas Stanley, 32, of Farmington, who was rendered quadriplegic by spinal muscular atrophy, a condition brought on by a congenital defect known as a tethered spinal cord. The problem manifested itself during high school, and Stanley has had three surgeries to correct it — but they only made the problem worse, he said recently.

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