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The Illinois medical marijuana program is expanding to include patients under 18 years old who suffer from certain health conditions, including epileptic seizures, the Associated Press reports. The changes are part of emergency rules posted by state health officials last week.

According to the Illinois Department of Health, children will require two separate doctor signatures that certify the patient will benefit from cannabis treatment before being allowed access to medical marijuana — adults only require one doctor’s signature to partake in the program. The annual fee for children, however, will be slightly lower.

The new rules have also added two spots to a medical advisory board: one spot is to be held by the parent or caregiver of a patient younger than 18, the other spot is for a medical professional whose focus is in pediatrics. These changes are to help ensure minors have their needs carefully considered in the wider context of the program.

These emergency rules only remain in effect for 150 days, permanent rules will be drafted later.

Sources:

http://www.thedailychronic.net/2014/39600/illinois-medical-marijuana-program-expanding-to-include-children/

Photo Credit: Matt Turner

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