AUSTIN — The Texas House gave final approval Tuesday to a limited medical marijuana bill that would give epilepsy patients access to trace amounts of cannabis oil. The next stop is Gov. Greg Abbott’s desk, marking a milestone that marijuana-reform advocates say is nothing short of historic in Texas.
The Republican hasn’t said whether he will sign one of the most talked-about measures in his first legislative session as governor. Here’s a closer look at the plan:
WHAT DOES IT DO?
The bill allows patients with intractable epilepsy, whose seizures are not controlled by usual treatments, to receive trace amounts of a marijuana plant extract to help treat their seizures. The maximum legal dosage would be so low that it wouldn’t produce the high associated with other parts of marijuana.
The oil could only be obtained with a prescription and would remain off-limits to patients with other medical conditions.
WHERE ELSE IS THIS ALREADY LEGAL?
Fourteen states in the past year have passed similar low-dose cannabis oil laws. Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, a potential 2016 presidential candidate, and Florida Gov. Rick Scott were among the first.
Republicans in those states have stressed that the oil would be strictly supervised and wouldn’t be a precursor to legalizing recreational marijuana.