Anxiety is one of the most common mental health conditions in the United States. According to the National Institute for Mental Health, it affects approximately 19% of the Americans.
Medical researchers have found that cannabis can help in treating anxiety disorders. In many marijuana legalized states, it’s listed among the MMJ qualifying conditions list. That means patients can now legally access the herb for medical purposes after getting recommendations from medical marijuana doctors online.
On July 20, 2019, Dr. Rachel Levine, Secretary of Health for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, announced adding Anxiety and Tourette Syndrome in the list of medical marijuana qualifying conditions.
As a result, 3,000 anxiety patients have joined the state’s medical marijuana program.
In the state, medical marijuana was legalized in April 2016. And, the first medical dispensaries opened in February 2018.
The updated MMJ Qualifying List of Pennsylvania
Currently, the Pennsylvania list of MMJ qualifying conditions list includes 23 conditions. The other conditions include-
- Huntington disease
- Inflammatory bowel disease
- Intractable seizures
- Multiple sclerosis
- Neurodegenerative diseases
- Parkinson’s disease
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
- Sickle cell anemia
- Terminal illness
- Tourette syndrome
- Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
- Cancer including remission therapy
- Crohn’s disease
- Dyskinetic and spastic movement disorders
- Damage to the nervous tissue of the central nervous system with an objective neurological indication of intractable spasticity, and other associated neuropathies
- Severe chronic or intractable pain of neuropathic origin or severe chronic or intractable pain
- Opioid use disorder for which conventional therapeutic interventions are contraindicated or ineffective, or for which adjunctive therapy is indicated in combination with primary therapeutic interventions.
Dr. Rachel Levine advised patients to use cannabis with high CBD and low THC content for treating anxiety disorders.
At a Wednesday meeting, John Collins, Director of the Office of Medical Marijuana, told that 212 people were certified to use medical cannabis for anxiety. According to him, the patient number has grown by about one thousand in just a week, bringing it to three thousand in a short time.
Collins said that there are 180,000 patients and 20,000 caregivers registered with the state’s medical marijuana program. And, approximately 121,000 patients are purchasing cannabis products—accounting for about $200 million in sales in dispensaries.
However, Pennsylvania is loosening rules for medical marijuana users. There are over 1600 physicians authorized to prescribe medical cannabis.
A Lehigh County judge ruled that police officers can’t legally search cars based solely on the smell of marijuana. She said that the “plain smell’ of marijuana no longer provides authorities with probable cause to conduct a search of a subject vehicle.”
Medical marijuana is effective in treating anxiety disorders. Researchers have found that the herb works by interacting with the endocannabinoid system of the body, thus regulating mood, sleep and various other bodily functions.
Recently, Pennsylvania added Anxiety and Tourette Syndrome in its 420 qualifying conditions list. As a result, three thousand anxiety patients have joined the state’s medical marijuana program. Patients can now access cannabis for treating anxiety after getting recommendations from medical marijuana doctors online.
What do you think about Pennsylvania’s decision of expanding its medical marijuana qualifying conditions list? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.