2019 SC Compassionate Care

The first year of this biennial state legislative session ended on Tuesday. The Senate medical affairs full committee held hearings last month with no movement on S366, the South Carolina Compassionate Care Act. Voting on the bill was postponed until next year when the committee reconvenes and with S366 listed at the top of the calendar. A few committee members had expressed concern they did not feel they had adequate time to read the details of the bill and amendments in order to move the bill this year. The bill will pick up exactly where it left off, giving the members opportunity in the off-season to understand the bill thoroughly. The legislators will be in their home districts, giving patient advocates a local opportunity to meet with them in their home offices or at public events.

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Long-Term Care Facilities and Medical Cannabis

Caring for a loved one is an inevitable part of life for most people. Consider yourself blessed if you are able to care for an older family member. For families with children who need long-term care, it gets more challenging. In an attempt to improve our own daughter’s life, we simplify her medications and eliminate those with harmful side effects to avoid “polypharmacy[CL1] ,” using multiple drugs to treat a condition. As a special-needs mom, I live with concern about how will my daughter be cared for after her parents have departed this life.

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Yesterday’s Big Win: Medical Cannabis

Yesterday was a big win for Medical Marijuana. Every ballot initiative that legalized Cannabis for medical purposes passed by a large margin. These initiatives where both in very conservative republican dominant states, (politically very similar to South Carolina). This gives us hope that when the general assembly goes back into session in January they will look to their counterparts and start to vote the will of the people.

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Scholarship Winners Announced!

CSC is very proud to announce we are participating in the Inaugural Update on Medical Cannabis: The Sciences of Cannabis and its Changing Role in Medicine, presented by the Drug Discovery – Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. The CME and CEU-accredited conference will be held on Friday, September 28th at MUSC in Charleston and is breaking new ground and building hope for patients throughout South Carolina.  CSC Directors of Outreach, as well as patient advocates and professionals, will gain insight and network with medical, research and legal experts on medical cannabis through our scholarship program. They will explore the most current evidence-based science as it translates to clinical and legal practice, as well as gain a comprehensive understanding of the risks and benefits of cannabinoids.

We would like to congratulate our scholarship winners who will attend the conference through Compassionate SC, our non-profit patient advocacy organization. These individual winners from around the state and with various backgrounds are given the opportunity to spread awareness throughout the community with the tools they will receive. In turn, South Carolina patients will access knowledge they can use to empower themselves to advocate for their personal rights as patients and caregivers, as well as the  right to have medical options that may be less harmful and more effective than others, such as pharmaceutical medications.

Please join us in congratulating our scholarship winners!

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CSC Patient Advocate Margaret Rodriquez: Medical Marijuana’s Documented Benefits

As a cancer patient living in South Carolina, I was shocked and saddened by Laura Hudson’s fallaciously titled July 10 column, “Exposing the Lies About Marijuana Legalization.”  In an effort to maintain our state’s prohibition on marijuana for medical use, she attempts to convince readers that millions of South Carolinians are mistaken in their support of allowing legal access to medical marijuana.  More disturbingly, she accuses supporters like me of being liars or dupes. I simply cannot sit by and allow these claims to go unaddressed.

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SC Primary Elections – Gubernatorial Candidates

The Primary elections in South Carolina are tomorrow and the polls are open beginning at 7am. This is an opportunity for medical cannabis advocates to vote for like-minded candidates seeking ballot spots for the November general election for state governor and members of the South Carolina House of Representatives. Since South Carolina does not have voter registration by party, when checking in, voters will be asked which primary they wish to vote in. If it’s the Democratic primary, one of two advisory questions on the ballot will ask if the voter supports a state law allowing doctors to prescribe medical marijuana. The Republican primary does not include any medical marijuana questions.

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Compassionate Care Act (H3521) Heading to the House Floor

The House Medical, Military, Public and Municipal Affairs (3M) Committee overwhelmingly approved a medical marijuana bill on Thursday in a vote of 14-3, sending it to the full House for consideration! The South Carolina Compassionate Care Act, known as H 3521 in the House, would allow seriously ill patients to use marijuana to treat their conditions with a recommendation from their doctors.

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Crossover Date Has Arrived

There are several key dates during the often-complex process of passing legislation, and today, April 10, is one of them. Known as the “crossover date,” it is the date by which a bill must pass out of the chamber from which it started. If a bill starts in the House, it has pass out of the House by April 10. If a bill started in the Senate, it would need to pass out of the Senate by that same date.

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