Hearing: HB 1086 Penalty ReductionMarch 17, 2021
Medical Cannabis Exhibit at the Texas CapitolMarch 25, 2021
Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy and Foundation for an Informed Texas have worked together on a survey of Texas patients to better understand patient needs, why they use cannabis, the conditions which cannabis helps, the effects of cannabis on these conditions, and to provide accurate data. The survey was conducted online between August 11, 2020, and October 6, 2020, and recruited participants through medical cannabis patient networks, including Foundation for an Informed Texas, Texas NORML and Texas Veterans for Medical Marijuana. Review the one pager, the full report and visit the Baker Institute site.
- 84% of respondents have considered leaving Texas for a state with a more inclusive medical cannabis program.
- 61% report having replaced prescription opioids and benzodiazepines with medical cannabis.
- 39% report that medical cannabis has improved quality of life.
- Anxiety, depression, and back pain are the most frequently reported conditions for medical cannabis use.
- Expand the Compassionate Use Program’s qualifying conditions and move to a system in which program eligibility is based on both symptoms and diagnosis.
- Remove the cap on THC content. Allow doctors and patients to determine the optimal strength and dosage for each individual’s medical needs.
- Revise the state’s current regulatory scheme so that program oversight rests with qualified medical professionals who can adjust program guidelines in response to evolving research and other relevant considerations.
- Provide legal protections against discrimination and denial of benefits in areas including but not limited to employment, health care, housing, education, and parental rights for people who use medical cannabis.
- Make possession of small amounts of cannabis flower and concentrates for personal use a fine-only offense to avoid criminalizing patients.
This study further supports the findings and recommendations offered by Vicente Sederberg LLP in a white paper they released in December of 2020 which found there are likely more than one million Texas residents with debilitating medical conditions who could benefit from medical cannabis but are still excluded in the current program.