A legislation whose objective is to limit the amount of THC found in medical marijuana may soon advance to the house floor, despite opposition from medical professionals. Republican Rep. Spencer Roach, who sponsored the legislation, stated that the goal of House Bill 1455 was to regulate the medical marijuana industry in the state of Florida.
The bill would not only impose advertising restrictions on physicians who administer medical marijuana but also limit the amount of marijuana a treatment center could dispense over a particular period of time. One provision in the measure that seems to be drawing the most resistance is a 10% potency limit that will be imposed on smokeable flower. Typically, the THC level in a medical marijuana plant ranges between 25%–30%.
During a House Healthcare Appropriations Subcommittee meeting, Roach stated that there wasn’t a credible scientific study that demonstrated THC’s medicinal value in concentrations above 10%. This, he said, was the basis for the 10% limit on smokable flower.
Generally speaking, the bans imposed on research on medical cannabis, both at the federal and state level, have led to an overall lack of medical cannabis research.
Democratic Rep. Carlos Guillermo Smith stated that this limitation would threaten access to smokable cannabis flower for medical users while also disrupting the cannabis industry in the state. At the moment, many cultivators of medical marijuana grow plants that have high THC levels.
Smith added that because cultivators were required to grow the cannabis within the state’s borders under the state’s climate conditions, they would not be able to grow flowers at 10% or less as would be required under this new legislation. Despite offering amendments that would begin a study on the effects of high THC amounts, none of Smith’s reforms were accepted.
Roach claimed that the state’s medical cannabis program had become a recreational drug use program that was operating disguised as a medical cannabis program. While debating, Roach maintained that this year, 71% of all medical marijuana prescriptions had been filed by 12% of qualified doctors, with some physicians prescribing large amounts of medical marijuana. This is despite revealing that he had not consulted with any medical marijuana physicians.
However, physicians are refuting these claims. During a Zoom meeting held after the legislation was passed, a group of physicians who certify patients for medical marijuana cards in the state challenged the Roach’s claims. One of them, Barry Gordon, is the owner of Compassionate Cannabis Clinic and a former ER doctor.
As the debate on how potent medical cannabis products need to be in Florida, a number of companies are hard at work developing therapeutic formulations from marijuana in order to make the plant more precise and effective as a medicine. An example of a company in this category is XPhyto Therapeutics Corp. (CSE: XPHY) (OTCQB: XPHYF) (FSE: 4XT), which is undertaking clinical trials to ascertain the efficacy and safety of several formulations, including an oral THC strip intended to treat nausea and anorexia.
NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to XPhyto Therapeutics Corp. (CSE: XPHY) (OTCQB: XPHYF) (FSE: 4XT) are available in the company’s newsroom at https://cnw.fm/XPHYF
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