Louisiana Medical Marijuana Laws and Regulations
In 2015, Louisiana attempted to update it dormant medical cannabis law with the passage of SB 143, the Alison Neustrom Act. While a good symbolic step for the state to take, it did not do anything to help the patients of the state have safe and legal access to medical cannabis therapy. The state regrettably used the term “prescribe” rather than “recommend” in its physician authorizing language, but due to the federal Schedule I status of cannabis, no physician will be able to write prescriptions unless there is a major change at the federal level.
However, in 2016, the state passed and signed a pair of bills - SB 271 and SB 180. The pair of bills fixes the “prescription” language issue, establishes legal protection for patients, and expands the qualifying conditions. Legal protections for producers and dispensers is left unaddressed, which could prevent the program from functioning.
SB 271 (2016) - "prescription language fix"
SB 180 (2016) - establishing prosecution protection for patients