November 7, 2016

Health Seeks Input On Medical Marijuana Draft Temporary Regs For Laboratories

Department of Health Secretary Dr. Karen Murphy Monday asked for public input on the proposed temporary regulations for laboratories that would be responsible for testing medical marijuana.  Comments are due November 18.
"We're especially looking for comments from the laboratory community to help us develop regulations that protect the integrity of the medical marijuana testing process," Secretary Murphy said. "As we move forward in this ground-breaking effort, we want to make sure that patient safety is paramount, and laboratories are essential to meeting that goal. These regulations are designed to ensure we have a safe and responsible process in place."
The proposed temporary regulations outline:
-- Protocols for sampling, testing, and reporting;
-- Quality assurance programs that need to be in place;
-- Transportation of samples from grower/processor facilities;
-- The financial, legal, and operational requirements needed by an individual to be considered for a laboratory permit; and
-- How those permits would be approved.
A survey also is available on the department's website for patients who will be eligible for the Medical Marijuana Program to help ensure the program will meet their needs.
The survey will be available on the department's website until 5:00 p.m. on Friday, November 18.
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 115 applications to date;
-- Released public surveys to aid in the development of temporary regulations for growers/processors and dispensaries/laboratories;
-- Developed the Medical Marijuana Physician Workgroup, which is scheduled to meet again on November 28; and
-- Released a Request for Information for Electronic Tracking IT solutions for the tracking of medical marijuana.
Full implementation of the program is expected to take between 18 and 24 months. The program will provide access to medical marijuana for patients who are Pennsylvania residents under a physician's care for the treatment of a serious medical condition as defined by Act 16.
Questions about the medical marijuana program can be emailed to or visit Health’s Medical Marijuana Program webpage.