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Notice About The Bills
The bill language for HB 843 / SB 1030 are similar. Information for these bills have been compiled together below.

Compassionate Medical Cannabis Act of 2014

House Bill # 843 - Cannabis

Sponsored by Judiciary Committee, Criminal Justice Subcommittee, Rep. Gaetz and Rep. Edwards
Co-Sponsored by Rep. Ahern, Rep. Antone, Rep. Caldwell, Rep. Clelland, Rep. Combee, Rep. Cruz, Rep. Danish, Rep. Fitzenhagen, Rep. Fresnen, Rep. Hood, Rep. Hooper, Rep. Hutson, Rep. Jones, S., Rep. Kerner, Rep. Moskowitz, Rep. Nelson, Rep. Pigman, Rep. Pilon, Rep. Raschein, Rep. Richardson, Rep. Rooney, Rep. Saunders, Rep. Smith, Rep. Stewart, Rep. Van Zant, and Rep. Wood

Senate Bill # 1030 - Cannabis

Sponsored by Health Policy, Sen. Bradley, Sen. Bean, and Sen. Brandes
Co-Sponsored by Sen. Galvano, Sen. Sobel, Sen. Soto, Sen. Gardiner, Sen. Stargel, and Sen. Simpson

Synopsis

CS/CS/SB 1030 passed the Senate on April 28, 2014. The bill was amended by the House on May 1, 2014, and subsequently passed the Senate on May 2, 2014.

The bill creates a regulatory scheme overseen by the Department of Health that authorizes the use of low-THC cannabis for medicinal purposes. Low-THC means a plant of the genus Cannabis, the dried flowers of which contain 0.8 percent or less of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and more than 10 percent of cannabidiol (CBD) weight for weight; the seeds thereof; the resin extracted from any part of such plant; or any compound, manufacture, salt, derivative, mixture, or preparation of such plant or its seeds or resin that is dispensed only from a dispensing organization.

The bill authorizes a Florida-licensed physician (MD or DO) received education in cannabis-based medicine through the Florida Medical Association or the Florida Osteopathic Medical Association, who has examines and is treating a patient suffering from cancer or a physical medical condition that chronically produces symptoms of seizures or severe and persistent muscle spasms may order low-THC cannabis to treat such disease, disorder, or condition or to alleviate symptoms of such disease, disorder, or condition, if no other satisfactory alternative treatment options exist for that patient and obtain a voluntary informed consent.

Criminal misdemeanor penalties are created for a physician who orders low-THC cannabis for a patient without reasonable belief that the patient is suffering from a qualifying condition and for any person who fraudulently represents himself or herself as having a qualifying condition for the purpose of obtaining an order for low-THC cannabis.

In addition to creating and maintaining the compassionate use registry, the bill requires DOH to authorize the establishment of five dispensing organizations to supply the state with low-THC cannabis. A dispensing organization is required to employ a medical director, who must be a physician and have successfully completed a course and examination that encompasses appropriate safety procedures and knowledge of low-THC cannabis. Additional criteria for approval as a dispensing organization include:

  • Possess a certificate of registration for the cultivations of more than 400,000 plants that is issued by the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.
  • Be operated by a nurseryman.
  • Have been operating as a registered nursery in Florida for at least 30 consecutive years.
  • And provide certified financials.
  • Upon approval, a dispensing organization must post a $5 million performance bond.

Florida Department of Health will also be required to establish the Office of Compassionate Use, under the direction of the Deputy State Health Officer. The Deputy State Health Officer is authorized to enhance access to investigational new drugs to Florida patients through approved clinical treatment plans or studies.

Two research programs are administered under this bill to develop or participate in Federal Food and Drug Administration-approved research:

  • Low-THC and Cannabidiol Research
    • Authorizes medical centers and state universities to conduct research on cannabidiol and low-THC cannabis.
  • Research of Cannabidiol and its effect on Intractable Childhood Epilepsy
    • Provides the James and Esther King Biomedical Research Program an annual and perpetual source of funding in order to support research initiatives in the areas of tobacco-related cancer, cardiovascular disease, stroke, and pulmonary disease. The Biomedical Research Advisory Council, consisting of 11 members, including: the CEOs of the American Lung Association of Florida, Greater Southeast Affiliate of the American Heart Association, Florida Division of the American Cancer Society; and the remaining members are appointed by the Governor, President of the Senate, and Speaker of the House.

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