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New Medical Cannabis Bill Advances

DES MOINES, IA (AP) -- An effort to expand access to medical marijuana in Iowa has won preliminary approval in the Iowa Senate.

A subcommittee reviewed the proposed legislation Wednesday. The bill would make medical marijuana available to people with a number of chronic diseases, including cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy.

Those approved by a doctor would then purchase marijuana products produced in Iowa at state-run dispensaries.

Last year, the Legislature approved a law that allows some residents with epilepsy to use oil with an ingredient derived from marijuana for treatment. But the law did not establish an in-state program for the production and
distribution of the oil. Critics say that as a result, the law is effectively useless.

Copyright 2015 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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