Iowa Adds Chronic Pain As Condition for Medical Cannabis, Rejects Opioid Addiction

On Friday, Iowa’s Medical Cannabidiol Board voted to add chronic pain to the list of qualifying conditions for medical marijuana, substituting it for the previously approved condition of “untreatable pain.” The edit is expected to expand access to the program, but many who are involved with the cannabis industry and its patients in the state are getting frustrated with Iowa’s slow evolution of marijuana policy.

The substitution of chronic pain for untreatable pain was the result of a campaign to add to the list of qualifying conditions in the state, led by dispensaries and patient advocates. They also wanted to include post- traumatic stress disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, schizophrenia, and opioid abuse disorder. Though the board did not give an instant go-ahead to any of the other proposed conditions, it did decide to delay the decision on PTSD until it meets in November.

During a public comment session on Friday, various industry advocates expressed their concern about the lack of further approvals. Many targeted Iowa’s relatively slow pace in cannabis regulation as compared with neighbors like Illinois, whose Governor signed a bill to legalize recreational marijuana last month.

“There’s been a failure to recognize that people are suffering,” said MedPharm dispensary

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