As adult-use laws spread, people worry that medical marijuana will seize to exist. The opposite happened in New York on Monday, however. Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a bill that legally recognizes cannabis as a legitimate medical solution for pain management.
Earlier this year, NY’s Department of Health updated its list of qualifying conditions for a cannabis prescription to include opioid replacement and opioid addiction. Thus, the new bill now allows for substance-use-disorder treatment providers to recommend cannabis to treat pain instead of prescribing opioids. In essence, this new bill solidifies the Department of Health’s policy changes and makes a doctor’s script for cannabis lawful.
“In this battle against the opioid epidemic, it is critical that we use every means at our disposal to prevent the unnecessary prescription of these dangerous and addictive painkillers,” Gov. Cuomo said in a statement. “Adding these conditions to the list of those approved for management with medical marijuana will help reduce the risk of addiction and provide suffering New Yorkers the relief they need.”
The signage of this bill comes after the governor’s recent primary win over pro-cannabis candidate, Cynthia Nixon. Many wondered if running against Nixon would push Cuomo toward supporting cannabis–a substance he