New York State Adds PTSD to Medical Marijuana Program, Will Menstrual Cramps Be Next?

“I am grateful to the Senate Health Committee for advancing this compassionate bill, and on behalf of countless veterans who could benefit, I urge the full Senate to promptly approve the bill. Veterans with PTSD should not have to choose between FDA-approved medications that carry a black box suicide warning and off-label drugs with no clinical efficacy and horrible side effects,” said Michael Krawitz, executive director of Veterans for Medical Cannabis Access. “There is another way: medical marijuana has helped veterans have a restful night’s sleep instead of night terrors, and thus experience a better quality of life.”

The program is easing up on the approved conditions and also recently added chronic pain to the list. There have been other proposals to expand the program, they struggle to get beyond the committee. For example, Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal introduced Bill 582 to add Dysmenorrhea or menstrual pain to the list of approved conditions.

  New York State is moving closer to adding PTSD as a bill approving the condition for medical marijuana advanced in the Senate on Wednesday. (Photo by Shutterstock)

New York State has one of the most restrictive medical marijuana programs in the country, but it may be starting to loosen up. A bi-partisan bill that would add post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as a qualifying condition passed the Senate Health Committee and now waits on Senate approval.

“I am grateful to the Senate Health Committee for advancing this compassionate bill, and on behalf of countless veterans who could benefit, I urge the full Senate to promptly approve the bill. Veterans with PTSD should not have to choose between FDA-approved medications that carry a black box suicide warning and off-label drugs with no clinical efficacy and horrible side effects,” said Michael Krawitz, executive director of Veterans for Medical Cannabis Access. “There is another way: medical marijuana has helped veterans have a restful night’s sleep instead of night terrors, and thus experience a better quality of life.”

The program is easing up on the approved conditions and also recently added chronic pain to the list. There have been other proposals to expand the program, they struggle to get beyond the committee. For example, Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal introduced Bill 582 to add Dysmenorrhea or menstrual pain to the list of approved conditions.

 Rosenthal may even get some star power to help her with the bill. Whoopi Goldberg owns a company called Whoopi & Maya that specializes in cannabis infused products that specifically target severe menstrual cramps. “It’s not some weird roundabout way for people to get stoned,” said Ms. Goldberg.

Whoopi and Maya Photo credit: Timothy White Copyright 2016

Whoopi & Maya

Whoopi Goldberg and her business partner Maya Elisabeth have created a line of cannabis infused products for the relief of menstrual pain. Photo credit: Timothy White Copyright 2016

Goldberg also pointed out that cramps should be considered chronic pain, but it isn’t and has to be added in its own separate category. “It seems so odd to me, but then I look at the folks who’ve created the bills and they aren’t people who would be dealing with periods,” she said. She also said she would try to help the New York effort out. Her products, which include a tincture, bath soak and edible product actually fit within the parameters of New York State that the medical marijuana not be smoked

“I’m going to try. I strongly believe that I can help them understand why this is not a high,” Goldberg said. New Jersey had legislation introduced last year to also add menstrual cramps to the list of approved conditions for their program, but so far it hasn’t been added. The state did add PTSD last September.