On July 25, 2017, the New Jersey Medicinal Marijuana Program Review Panel revealed an initial recommendation to add migraines, Tourette’s Syndrome, chronic pain and anxiety to the list of qualifying conditions for those seeking medical marijuana treatment in the Garden State.
“The Initial Recommendation to grant petitions is based on the Panel’s finding that the conditions involved are debilitating and that medicinal marijuana is more likely than not to have the potential to be beneficial to treat or alleviate the debilitation associated with the conditions,” the panel explained to Health Commissioner Cathleen Bennett in its recommendation letter.
According to the recommendation, 45 petitions—each supported by peer-reviewed publications—were presented to the panel for consideration in an effort to determine whether more conditions should be added to the qualifying conditions list for the New Jersey Medicinal Marijuana Program.
“We are glad to see that the panel took the testimony of experts and the petitions of New Jerseyans seriously in making their recommendation to add chronic pain and other conditions to the list of qualifying conditions for medical marijuana,” said Roseanne Scotti, New Jersey State Director of the Drug Policy Alliance.
While the panel asked Bennett to add chronic pain, anxiety, Tourette’s Syndrome and migraines to the list of eligible conditions, it also asked her to deny asthma and chronic fatigue from being added.
The recommendation is not final as New Jersey’s Department of Health will take public comments for 60 days, as well as hold a public hearing within that time frame.
“As New Jersey continues dealing with problematic opioid use in our state, expanding the medical marijuana program to include chronic pain is a real solution that can be immediately implemented,” Scotti said.
After the 60-day comment period, Bennett will be the deciding factor on whether to add any of the proposed conditions to the New Jersey Medicinal Marijuana Program’s list of qualifying conditions.