Health & Human Services

Iowa Won't Legalize Medical Marijuana for All But What About People with Seizures?

March 27, 2014

State Sen. Jack Hatch of Des Moines said Wednesday he is making an 11th-hour effort in this year’s legislative session to win approval for the legalization of medical marijuana.

Hatch, who is seeking the Democratic nomination for governor, spoke at a Statehouse news conference with about a dozen children affected by seizures their parents contend could be alleviated by medical cannabis. The parents are members of the Epilepsy Foundation of Iowa.

“This state should be about innovation — not only about how we conduct our business and our enterprises, but how we treat patients,” Hatch said.

Legislation to legalize medical marijuana was introduced in the Senate earlier this session, although it was immediately declared dead because of a lack of bipartisan sponsorship.

But Hatch said he is drafting legislation with a more narrow focus. His proposal would allow doctors to prescribe medical cannabis to relieve seizures and would permit patients to obtain the drug from out of state without fear of prosecution for using the drug in Iowa.

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