Cannabidiol for the treatment of epilepsy

The House Courts and Criminal Code Committee heard SB 15 on cannabidiol for the treatment of epilepsy sponsored by Reps. Friend, Miller, Hamm, and Schaibley.  Author Sen. Tomes and Sponsor Rep. Friend introduced the bill, which defines cannabidiol and establishes a cannabidiol registry for individuals authorized to use cannabidiol to treat persons with intractable epilepsy. The bill also establishes a pilot study registry for physicians who want to study the use of cannabidiol in the treatment of intractable epilepsy and requires the state department of health to develop and maintain both registries. It also provides civil, criminal, and administrative immunity for physicians and nurses in the use of cannabidiol in the treatment of intractable epilepsy if certain requirements are met and exempts physicians, caregivers, nurses and individuals from criminal penalties for possession or use of cannabidiol under certain conditions. The bill permits a pharmacy to dispense cannabidiol subject to specific requirements and encourages state educational institutions to research the use of cannabidiol in the treatment of other intractable diseases.  Sen. Tomes noted that HB 1148 on the same subject had just been extensively amended in the Senate.

A number of family members of children subject to intractable epileptic seizures testified in support of the bill. Sen. Tomes and Rep. Friend closed by urging passage of SB 15 so that it can be harmonized with HB 1148 and then adopted by both houses or in conference committee.  In discussion, members agreed that the bill should be passed to allow changes to be made later in conference committee.  An amendment to have the bill contain the essential elements in the original HB 1148 with a provision of civil immunity added was adopted by consent.  The bill passed as amended 10-0.

Read the bill at https://iga.in.gov/legislative/2017/bills/senate/15