- D.H. Reilly
Medical Marijuana in Indiana Not Legalized in 2021, but 2022 Looks Promising
2021 wasn’t the year you were finally able to get an Indiana Marijuana Card, but that doesn’t mean the news was all bad. In fact, as we look back on 2021 and ahead to 2022, we feel more confident than ever that safe, effective relief with cannabis is on its way to the Hoosier State.
2021 Starts Out Looking Good for Medical Marijuana in Indiana Legislature
Four different medical marijuana bills were proposed in the legislature within the first month of 2021, but none of them were even given hearings in the committees to which they were referred.
Senator David Niezgodski introduced Senate Bill 321, which would have charged the State Department of Health with running a five-year medical marijuana trial program. The bill was referred to the Committee on Corrections and Criminal Law.
Representative Jim Lucas proposed House Bill 1026, which would have allowed physicians to prescribe medical marijuana for patients with serious medical conditions. It would have also explicitly banned law enforcement officers from harassing medical marijuana patients and from cooperating with federal law enforcement attempts at enforcing federal marijuana laws that criminalized use approved by the state. The bill was referred to the Committee on Public Health.
House Bill 1214, which was written by Representatives Sue Errington and John Bartlett, would have established a medical marijuana program that would allow patients with a physician’s recommendation to possess and use a set amount of marijuana. This bill was also referred to the Committee on Public Health.
Finally, like SB 321, House Bill 1547 would have called for the Department of Health to oversee a medical cannabis program. The bill, which was also referred to the Committee on Public Health, was proposed by Representatives Zach Payne, Jake Teschka, and Heath VanNatter.
Newfound Scientific Support for Medical Marijuana Improves Odds of Legalization in Indiana
After the initial promise and excitement of these four bills being considered simultaneously by the legislature, 2021 settled into being a largely uneventful year for medical marijuana politically. Fortunately, medical science continued to uncover evidence of the medicine’s efficacy, and it was far from an uneventful year on that front.
At the 2021 meeting of the American College of Rheumatology, researchers presented findings that showed that Fibromyalgia patients experienced reduced pain, anxiety, and depression, along with improved sleep, after beginning a medical marijuana regimen.
A study published in the peer-reviewed journal Molecules presented exciting findings for patients dealing with neuropathy, one of the most difficult forms of chronic pain to treat. Researchers say that the CBD and THC in medical marijuana bind with cannabinoid, opioid, and serotonin receptors in the body to create an analgesic effect.
An article published in Frontiers in Psychiatry, a peer-reviewed journal, showed that “Medicinal cannabis products, especially products high in CBD, may help to treat symptoms of depression,” as well as relieve anxiety and sleep disorders. The study’s lead author noted that this was an especially encouraging finding given the prevalence of these conditions, and how unsatisfied many patients are with their pharmaceutical options for treating them.
Scientific Findings Can Lead to Legislative Action
The exciting year scientifically for medical marijuana is a big deal, because every new study that confirms medical marijuana’s safety and efficacy helps to push us closer to the day when it is legal to all Hoosiers, and all Americans, who need it.
Although medical marijuana is legal in thirty-six states, cannabis is still considered a Schedule I drug by the federal government, meaning it has “no currently accepted medical use” and a “high potential for abuse.” As a result, scientists who want to know more about the medical value of marijuana face significant barriers in conducting their research.
Consequently, there is a much larger body of research related to most pharmaceutical medications than there is to medical marijuana. And because science demands high levels of certainty before drawing conclusions, scientists are generally less willing to make conclusive statements about medical marijuana’s efficacy than they are about pharmaceuticals.
The result is that marijuana research has been that marijuana research is “bottlenecked because of limitations on studying the Cannabis sativa plant.” And that’s why these findings are so exciting. Research of medical marijuana is hampered by outdated biases and laws, so each new study that discovers or reinforces positive findings helps chip away at lawmakers’ uncertainties.
Change is Around the Corner for Medical Marijuana in Indiana
Multiple medical marijuana bills being introduced in the legislature. Continued scientific support for the medicine’s safety and efficacy, lending support to those legislative efforts, and increasing the odds of future attempts. And a state that is ready for medical marijuana.
Put it all together, add 91% support for medical marijuana nationally, and it’s only a matter of time before change comes to the Hoosier State.
If you want to see that change come sooner than later, you can do your part. Contact your state legislators, and let them know that you’re on the side of suffering patients and medical science. Let them know that you’re for medical marijuana.
You Have to Wait for Medical Marijuana, but You Can Start Getting Ready Now
And after you let your lawmakers know you expect them to take action, start getting ready for the day they do by taking your first step towards getting your Indiana Marijuana Card.
Reserve a medical marijuana evaluation online today, and we’ll book an appointment for you with one of our qualified, compassionate doctors just as soon as Indiana’s medical marijuana market is up and running. You’ll even save $25 off the cost of your evaluation!
Doctors Who Care.
Relief You Can Trust.
We’re dedicated to helping all people safely and conveniently find relief and wellness through access to medical marijuana. By focusing on education and inclusion, we hope to reduce the stigma surrounding cannabis and those who want to use it to enhance their health.
If you have any questions, call us at (833) 781-7755, or simplyreserve a medical marijuana evaluation today!