Utah House passes bill giving medical pot to kids

Feb 23 2014 - 5:02pm

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 In a Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014 file photo, medical marijuana advocate Barbara Kutchback, of Monroe, Ga., holds a photo of her 3-year-old granddaughter as she listens to other advocates tell of their children's suffering, after a bill to legalize marijuana for medicinal purposes was introduced in the State House chamber, in Atlanta. Kutchback's granddaughter suffers from a rare epilepsy disease and they believe marijuana can help relieve her suffering. In states where lawmakers are more likely to talk about the importance of Second Amendment rights and displays of the Ten Commandments, there is a serious effort underway to legalize medical marijuana. The push is gaining momentum in the Deep South, due in large part to heart-breaking stories of children suffering dozens of seizures a day whose parents say they would benefit from access to a type of cannabis oil.(AP Photo/John Amis, File)
 In a Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014 file photo, medical marijuana advocate Barbara Kutchback, of Monroe, Ga., holds a photo of her 3-year-old granddaughter as she listens to other advocates tell of their children's suffering, after a bill to legalize marijuana for medicinal purposes was introduced in the State House chamber, in Atlanta. Kutchback's granddaughter suffers from a rare epilepsy disease and they believe marijuana can help relieve her suffering. In states where lawmakers are more likely to talk about the importance of Second Amendment rights and displays of the Ten Commandments, there is a serious effort underway to legalize medical marijuana. The push is gaining momentum in the Deep South, due in large part to heart-breaking stories of children suffering dozens of seizures a day whose parents say they would benefit from access to a type of cannabis oil.(AP Photo/John Amis, File)

SALT LAKE CITY -- A bill to give children with epilepsy access to a cannabis extract has cleared its first major hurdle at the Utah Legislature, despite opposition from the Utah Medical Association.

The House Law Enforcement Committee voted 8-2 on Friday to send to the House the measure affecting children suffering from Dravet syndrome.

The legislation would legalize the use of non-intoxicating cannabis oil taken from marijuana plants. The extract contains extremely low levels of the psychoactive compound in marijuana that makes users feel high.

More than a half-dozen parents testified in support of the bill, saying cannabis oil has been observed to halt seizures in children who have exhausted all other remedies.

But the Utah Medical Association maintains there haven't been enough clinical trials and scientific evidence to legalize hemp oil extract.

 

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