Advocates calling for immediate access to medical marijuana - NEWS10 ABC: Albany, New York News, Weather, Sports

Advocates calling for immediate access to medical marijuana

Posted: Updated: Jul 28, 2014 03:48 PM
ALBANY N.Y. -Advocates are calling the Governor to create immediate access to medical marijuana for terminally ill patients and those whose illnesses are life threatening.

This comes after a nine-year-old girl near Buffalo died last week from a severe seizure, according to advocates the nine year old could have been treated with medical marijuana.

Although the Compassionate Care Act has been signed into law it will take 18 months to implement the program in the state.

Governor Cuomo says he wants to ensure patients get the help they need and that penalties will be in place for those who try to abuse the system.

Many medical marijuana advocates say critically ill patients cannot wait that long.

Due to this urgency, Monday morning a four-time cancer survivor and Troy resident along with her advocate group also known as CCNY or Compassionate Care New York will be meeting with the Governor's staff and the Department of Health demanding emergency access to medical marijuana.

Wendy Conte was among the advocates for medical marijuana at the Capitol on Monday. Conte lost her daughter, Anna, earlier in July to epilepsy. She says medical marijuana would have made the difference, and if it was available, her daughter would be alive today.

“My daughter was full of life she went to school, horseback riding and swimming and her life was taken because of seizures, so if the Governor feels that 18 months is a good time frame, it is not. Children are dying daily,” said Conte.

Advocates say they cannot wait until the full system is up and running or more people will likely die waiting for the program.

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