Mississippians will soon decide the state's marijuana laws. MPB's Kobee Vance reports on what a proposed amendment would mean for state healthcare.
In November, Mississippians will vote on Ballot Initiative 65 to determine if medical marijuana will be legal in the state. It would allow licensed physicians to prescribe marijuana to patients with debilitating medical conditions.
Jamie Grantham is with the Medical Marijuana 2020 campaign in Mississippi.
She says there are thousands of testimonials from people who suffer from Parkinson's, epilepsy, nerve damage and cancer treatments who would benefit from medical marijuana.
"They're struggling to get through the day because of the pain and the different symptoms of those. And they try medical marijuana and they are able to walk their dog. They're able to play with their children. They're able to sleep at night. And it actually works to relieve the pain."
Dr Thomas Dobbs is the State Health Officer. He says the risks of medical marijuana still need to be studied,
"There are very real know harms from marijuana use, and those have not been adequately studied, especially using it in the format that's outlined within the amendment."
Dobbs also says - there should be more specific language in the amendment to outline proper prescriptions.
"Other things that are very worrisome include the fact that it's going to be a constitutional amendment, and it can't be change in statute. So all the things that are baked into the language of that amendment, it would not be able to be changed. So if we really discovered that the vaping of THC was dangerous and deadly, it basically would prohibit us from regulating that."
If the amendment passes, it will be regulated by the Department of health.
Dobbs feels that the oversight needed by the legislation would be too large the State Department of Health to handle on its own.