HARRISBURG, Pa., April 11, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Department of Health Secretary Dr. Karen Murphy today urged the medical community to provide feedback on proposed temporary regulations for physicians interested in participating in the Medical Marijuana Program under Act 16.

“The process for a patient to obtain medical marijuana will begin with the physician, so it’s vital to ensure that our regulatory process for those physicians is open and transparent,” said Secretary Murphy. “Our focus remains to implement a patient-focused medical marijuana program that gives help to those who need it, and these temporary regulations mark an important step forward in achieving that goal.”

The Practitioner Temporary Regulations outline the process for a physician with an active Pennsylvania license to register as a practitioner in the Medical Marijuana Program. Registration allows a practitioner to certify a patient’s serious medical condition and offer his or her recommendations on a course of treatment for the patient that includes obtaining medical marijuana at a permitted commonwealth dispensary.

Comments will be accepted on the temporary regulations until April 20, 2017.

The Medical Marijuana Program was signed into law by Governor Tom Wolf on April 17, 2016. Since that time, the department has:

Completed the Safe Harbor temporary guidelines and Safe Harbor Letter application process, as well as approved 224 applications; Completed temporary regulations for growers/processors, dispensaries and laboratories which have appeared in the Pennsylvania Bulletin; Released Phase 1 permit applications for grower/processors and dispensaries; Developed the Medical Marijuana Physician Workgroup; and Released a Request for Quotations for Electronic Tracking IT solutions for the tracking of medical marijuana.

The Medical Marijuana Program became effective on May 17, 2016, and is expected to be fully implemented by 2018. The program will offer medical marijuana to patients who are residents of Pennsylvania and

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