Colorado lawmakers pass bill to allow use of medical marijuana to treat PTSD

DENVER — Colorado lawmakers passed a bill to add post-traumatic stress disorder to the list of conditions eligible for treatment with medical marijuana.

SB17-017 passed a final vote in the Colorado Senate on Wednesday and now heads to the governor’s desk.

“The bill creates the same rights, limitations and criminal defenses and exceptions as the constitutional right to use medical marijuana,” the sponsors state on the Colorado General Assembly website.

In order to be eligible, a physician has to complete a full assessment of the patient’s medical history, including reviewing a previous diagnosis for a debilitating or disabling medical condition, and current medical condition, including an appropriate personal physical examination, before the patient applies for a registry identification card.

Additionally, the physician must be available to offer to provide follow-up care and treatment to the patient to determine the efficacy of the use of medical marijuana as a treatment.

When it comes to patients younger than 18, the prescription would have to be approved by two physicians, one of whom must be a board-certified pediatrician, a board-certified family physician or a board-certified child and adolescent psychiatrist.

Also, each of the patient’s parents residing in Colorado would have to consent in writing to the state health agency.

According to the Associated Press, at least 15 other states allow people to use medical marijuana to treat PTSD.

A spokesman for Gov. John Hickenlooper said the decision on whether to sign the bill into law could come in a matter of days or weeks.