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New State Laws Permit Medical Marijuana Use In Hospitals


sherbrooke hospital medical marijuanaBy Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director

Legislation recently signed into law in Connecticut and Maine permit for the use of medicinal marijuana formulations by hospitalized patients.

Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy yesterday signed legislation, HB 5450, to protect nurses who administer medical marijuana to qualified patients in hospital settings from any criminal, civil, or disciplinary action. Other provisions in the bill expand the pool of patients eligible for cannabis therapy to include those under the age of 18, and seek to establish a state-sponsored research program.

In Maine, Gov. Paul LePage recently signed LD 726 into law, which similarly protects hospital administrators and staff from criminal or civil liability if they permit qualified patients access to non-inhaled preparations of medical marijuana in hospitals. Under the law, patients would not necessarily be provided or administered medical marijuana by hospital staff, but could be provided cannabis products by third parties.

Separate provisions in LD 726 establish licensing protocols for marijuana testing facilities and the labeling of medical cannabis products.

Connecticut and Maine are the first states to explicitly provide immunity to hospitals that permit patients to medicate with cannabis.

A summary of 2016 state legislation is online from NORML’s Take Action Center here.

Source: NORML - make a donation


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Johnny Green


  1. This simple dried herb should be legal, thanks 420EvaluationsOnline for offering me a medical pot! My pain soothes.

  2. Forgive my harping but is it not weird that THOUSANDS of hospital patients in Colorado get a very rude awakening (because of pain, often literally) when they are denied cannabis by the hospital for pain relief?? My point is that how were Colorado activists and law makers not aware that this extremely important issue was overlooked when legalizing cannabis in their state?
    The smug refusal was given by hospital staff because, presumably, in Colorado at least you could get cannabis easily yourself via a medpot card or rec shop, and to get national insurance companies on board would be a difficult legal battle especially since big opiate manufacturers have been in bed with the Feds and Insurance cartels for decades.
    I should also mention, as a side note, that I was given an opiate prescription without even asking for one.

  3. Sharon Taulbee on

    Now this is a step in the right direction. National trend….YES PLEASE!!!!

  4. There needs to be public exposure of this in Colorado. Protests and rallies in front of hospitals would be excellent. Colorado residents don’t know that his negligence is going on in their state. Get the word out!!

  5. Let’s hope this becomes a national trend. I was shocked to learn that in Colorado they cannot prescribe cannabis for hospital patients. When I was in the hospital in Denver recently, they offered me an opiate prescription but regarded my request for cannabis as something they’d rather not discuss, stating that they would need federal approval. In Denver!!

  6. Closet Warrior on

    This is another yuuuge step forward for patients and hopefully the doctors and nurses will actually report the facts that mmj does help their patients w/out opiates. Furthermore, Israel has actually been studying and administering mmj for a plethora of disease, cancers, and neurological treatments.

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