Thursday Hearing on Hawaii Bill to Remove Chronic Pain as Qualifying Condition for Medical Cannabis

The first medical Cannabis (marijuana) related bill of the new Hawaii legislative term has been scheduled, and, unfortunately, it is HB1963, which removes chronic pain as a stand-alone medical condition.

The hearing has been scheduled for Thursday February 2, 2012 at 11:15am, in front of the House Committees on Health and Public Safety/Military Affairs.

Public testimony must be submitted by 11:15am on Wednesday, February 1st.

Hawaii state citizens who wish to submit testimony can do so at this link.

Enter in the bill number: HB1963 (no spaces) and hit “submit”, and the form will be filled in. You can either upload a document, or type your text into the “additional comments” section. Make sure to agree to the terms and conditions, and then hit the button to “submit testimony.”

Personal stories of why cannabis works for you are important, but here are a few thoughts:

  • What is the number one prescription drug in America? Vicoden (Hydrocodone combined with acetaminophen), which is used to treat…pain.
  • Vioxx was an FDA-approved medication, used to treat pain and arthritis, until it was removed from the US market because of the increased risk of stroke and heart attack resulting in more 55,000 deaths.
  • Acetaminophen (Tylenol) is in so many products that people were unknowingly taking too much, leading to liver damage. The dose amounts have been lowered, and warning labels changed.
  • There are more than 20,000 deaths per year from opiate and NSAID’s (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) vs. zero for Cannabis
  • Both Institute of Medicine and the Veteran’s Administration acknowledge that about 1 in 3 Americans suffer from chronic pain.

The citizens of the state of Hawaii and their doctors should be allowed to choose the appropriate medicine for their unique conditions. It should not be a law enforcement decision to limit medical choices.

The citizens of Hawaii must submit testimony quickly to defeat this bill! _________________________________________________

HB1963 – description ( view the full bill here.)

Updates the law relating to the medical use of marijuana by:
(1) requiring physicians who recommend medical marijuana to register a place of business or professional practice with the department of public safety
(2) clarifying definitions with respect to medical use of marijuana
(3) establishing a revocation period for those violating the medical marijuana program condition
(4) limiting the amount of marijuana that can be grown or possessed at a location
(5) requiring patients and caregivers to have their registration identification certificates with them when they are in possession or control of marijuana
(6) increasing the penalties for fraudulent misrepresentations about the medical use of marijuana.

A bit more specific:
(2) “Debilitating medical condition” means: cancer, glaucoma, HIV/AIDS, or a condition that produces one of the following: Cachexia/wasting syndrome; severe pain, severe nausea, seizures, seizures characteristic of epilepsy, severe and persistent muscle spasms, including those characteristic of multiple sclerosis or Crohn’s disease, or…any other medical condition approved by the department of health (in response to a physician or potentially qualifying patient) that has been authorized by the legislature. There area a lot of other serious diseases,you can read more at A person cannot be a caregiver if they have a felony conviction.
(3) If a person is found to violate the conditions of use (HRS 329-122) they may be suspended from the medical cannabis program for up to three years.
(4) Limits the number of blue cards at any single location to three, thereby allowing for a maximum of 21 plants and nine ounces of usable marijuana. It does remove the distinction between mature and immature plants.
(5) Fraudulent misrepresentation in the application form or in statements made to law enforcement of any fact or circumstance relating to the medical use of marijuana to avoid arrest or prosecution will become a class C felony (currently it is a petty misdemeanor), and therefore has harsher penalties.