The Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program Act is about to become the Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Program Act in Illinois as Senate Bill 2023 – passed by both the Illinois House and the Senate – heads to the Governor for signature.

The changes to the medical cannabis act involve removing the sunset provision to make the act a permanent program and expanding the definition of “debilitating medical condition” to add:

  • ulcerative colitis,
  • autism,
  • chronic pain,
  • irritable bowel syndrome,
  • migraines,
  • osteoarthritis,
  • anorexia nervosa,
  • Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome,
  • Neuro-Behcet’s Autoimmune Disease,
  • neuropathy,
  • polycystic kidney disease, and
  • superior canal dehiscence syndrome.

The amendment also creates a definition for a “certifying health care professional” which replaces the term Physician as the person certifying the patient’s qualifications and expands the list of those able to grant that status from just those licensed under the Medical Practice Act to those licensed under the Nurse Practice Act and the Physician Assistant Practice Act.

Additionally, the new Illinois Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act allows patients under the medical cannabis act to purchase seeds and grow plants at home – a right the original Illinois Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act had allowed for all persons, but was restricted in the final version to the medical cannabis act patients.

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