The Alabama Senate has approved a bill authorizing the use of medical marijuana for some medical conditions.
Senators swiftly approved the bill Thursday morning on a 17-6 vote. It now moves to the House of Representatives.
Republican Sen. Tim Melson of Florence said research shows medical marijuana can offer relief to patients with certain chronic medical conditions without the addiction of opioids.
His bill would set up a state oversight commission and a process for prescribing marijuana for people with certain medical conditions. Patients with a valid medical cannabis card could not be charged with marijuana possession.
Melson said there are multiple safeguards. Patients will have to have a doctor’s recommendation and a second opinion and meet other conditions.
Senators had delayed a vote Wednesday because of a threatened filibuster.
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