A Hawaii Senate committee approved a bill to make it so people 65 and older can automatically qualify for medical cannabis, regardless of whether they have a diagnosed condition that would otherwise make them eligible.
Critics at state agencies say this effectively amounts to legalizing adult-use cannabis for the older population without creating a broader regulated adult-use market like the ones that exist in other states.
The bill cleared the Senate Health Committee unanimously 3-0, with two members absent from the vote.
The bill would make a simple statutory change to the state’s existing medical cannabis law. As it stands, only patients diagnosed “as having a debilitating medical condition” by a doctor qualify for the program. That would be expanded to also include anyone “who has reached the age of sixty-five.”
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