New York’s Republican-controlled Senate has approved a bill adding post-traumatic stress disorder to the state’s medical cannabis qualifying condition list, the NY Daily News reports. The measure, which passed 50-13, now moves to the desk of Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
Rick Azzopardi, spokesperson for the governor, indicated that Cuomo would review the legislation.
The measure was passed by the state Assembly – controlled by Democrats – earlier this year, making it truly a bi-partisan bill with the backing of veterans’ advocates. If signed by the governor, New York would be the 27th state to approve medical cannabis therapies for PTSD, and the 12th this year, according to Marijuana Policy Project Legislative Counsel Karen Bell.
“We hope Gov. Cuomo will do the same and sign this important legislation. With a single swipe of his pen, he can help countless people find relief,” she said in a Fox40 report. “Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan and his colleagues should be commended for addressing the needs of New York residents who are dealing with this terrible condition, including our veterans. By signing this legislation, Gov. Cuomo can ensure New Yorkers don’t get left behind.”
Earlier this month, U.S. Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin indicated the VA – a federal agency – would look into studying the impact of medical cannabis on PTSD in states where medical cannabis is available for the condition. Currently, VA doctors cannot write medical cannabis recommendations for their patients.