HARRISBURG, Pa., Aug. 18, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Health Secretary Dr. Karen Murphy today provided an update on the implementation status of Pennsylvania's medical marijuana program and announced the department is seeking input on its draft temporary regulations for growers and processors.
"The Department of Health is being very thoughtful and thorough in developing this complex patient and medically-focused program," said Murphy. "Providing the public, our partners, and stakeholders with the opportunity to review the draft temporary regulations and provide feedback before they are published helps us ensure we are being transparent throughout the process. I encourage all interested individuals to visit our website and provide feedback to help us create a high quality, efficient, and compliant medical marijuana program for Pennsylvania residents with serious medical conditions."
The department has finished drafting the temporary regulations for growers and processors and will have them available for review and feedback until August 28. These temporary regulations provide details on the information and operational requirements for a grower/processor permit application. They will also address things like: electronic inventory tracking; packaging and labeling of medical marijuana; transportation of medical marijuana; disposal of marijuana and medical marijuana; and the recall of medical marijuana or marijuana. After reviewing and considering public comment, the department will publish the growers and processors temporary regulations in the Pennsylvania Bulletin this fall.
A survey was also released today on the department's website seeking input from the patient and caregiver community. This short survey will be available until September 1. The department will use the information from this survey to help draft the temporary regulations for patients and caregivers, which is expected to be published by the end of 2016.
Secretary Murphy also provided the following updates at a press briefing today in Harrisburg:
- The department has approved 53 Safe Harbor Letters to date. These letters enable parents, legal guardians, caregivers and spouses of minors under the age of 18 who have been certified as having serious medical conditions to possess medical marijuana in approved form to administer to their minor within the commonwealth. Safe Harbor Letter applications are available here.
- Responses to the department's Request for Information (RFI) for Seed to Sale IT solutions are being reviewed. The RFI was released to survey the vendor community and gather information for the department to be able to meet the required electronic tracking of medical marijuana in Pennsylvania. A request for purchase for the seed to sale solution is expected to be announced by the end of 2016.
- The Medical Marijuana Physician Workgroup held its first meeting on Aug. 8. Topics discussed included an overview of the medical marijuana program, required training course for physicians, and medical certifications. The workgroup's input will be used to assist with the drafting of the temporary regulations for physicians.
The medical marijuana program was signed into law by Governor Tom Wolf on April 17, 2016. The program is expected to be implemented by early 2018 and, when completed, will offer medical marijuana to patients who are residents of Pennsylvania and under a physician's care for the treatment of a serious medical condition as defined by Act 16.
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SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Health