Later this July, Pennsylvania’s list of 21 conditions that qualify for medical marijuana treatments will grow to 23. On Thursday, Pennsylvania’s Department of Health approved the addition of two new qualifying conditions: anxiety and Tourette Syndrome. According to Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine, the decision to add the two conditions wasn’t an easy one. But ultimately, Levine approved the conditions in light of growing evidence that cannabis can be an affective adjunct to traditional anxiety and Tourette Syndrome treatments.
The addition of the two conditions could transform Pennsylvania’s medical marijuana program. While the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) say it’s difficult to know exactly how many people have Tourette Syndrome, studies estimate that 1 of every 162 (0.6 percent) of children in the U.S. lives with the condition. Furthermore, anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the U.S., affecting more than 18 percent of the adult population.
PA Health Secretary: Cannabis Should Accompany Anxiety, Tourette Treatments, Not Replace Them
Pennsylvania’s Medical Marijuana Act became law in April 2016. But it would take until early 2018 for the program to be fully up and running. The law mandates that the state’s medical marijuana program be run by a Director