Louisiana lawmakers looking to expand medical marijuana program

By  | 

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Louisiana's medical marijuana program would be available for more diseases and disorders, under a bill that is steps from final passage.

Senators voted 25-9 Wednesday for Rep. Ted James' proposal to include glaucoma, severe muscle spasms, intractable pain, post-traumatic stress disorder and Parkinson's disease on the list eligible for medicinal pot. They then voted 21-10 for a separate measure by Harvey Rep. Rodney Lyons to add autism spectrum disorder.

Both bills head back to the House for review of Senate changes. The proposals earlier won passage there.

Supporters say therapeutic marijuana could help people. Opponents said lawmakers should wait until the medical marijuana program begins before expanding eligibility.

Medical marijuana is expected to be available to patients for the first time this summer.