NY's medical marijuana bill: Glaucoma out, rheumatoid arthritis in – The Journal News / Lohud.com

Recent amendments to New York medical marijuana legislation would include not allowing it to be used for glaucoma, but for rheumatoid arthritis, the bill’s Senate sponsor said.

“We don’t want it to be like California. California was like the wild west,” Savino said of the proliferation of medical marijuana dispensers there.

She said ophthalmologists told her that better drugs are available to treat the illness. But rheumatoid arthritis would be included.

“They now have better drugs that can treat glaucoma,” Savino said on “The Capitol Pressroom,” a public radio show. “In order to get a benefit from medical marijuana if you’re a glaucoma patient, you have to smoke a lot of it. There are now better drugs. So at their request, they said take this tool out of the toolbox.”

The Assembly and Senate have legislation that would legalize medical marijuana on a limited basis for specific illnesses, which Savino described as “a serious, debilitating, life-threatening condition that’s going to be continuous for a very long time.”

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has his own proposal.

Savino said in a op-ed in the Buffalo News that the measure has enough votes in the Senate to pass, and it recently received Sen. Joseph Robach, R-Greece, Monroe County, as a co-sponsor. Medical marijuana legislation has repeatedly passed in the Democratic-led Assembly.

Senate GOP leader Dean Skelos told reporters last week that “there’s a good possibility” the Senate would vote on some type of medical marijuana bill before the Legislature ends session in late June.

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