Medical Cannabis Bills Unanimously Pass Virginia Senate


Richmond, Va — Senator Siobhan Dunnavant's SB1557, Senator David Marsden's SB1719, and Senator Glen Sturtevant's SB1632 have passed the Senate unanimously.

SB1557 expands Virginia's medical cannabis program, adding nurse practitioners and physician assistants, and allowing a wide range of full therapeutic-strength formulations to be dispensed.

“Last year we passed unanimously the historic Let Doctors Decide bill that expanded patient access to our medical cannabis program,” said Senator Dunnavant, a medical doctor from Henrico. “We got a lot of things right, but there are some screws that can be tightened so the law better benefits the health and well-being of all Virginians."

The bill would also allow Virginia’s licensed pharmaceutical processors to dispense medical cannabis preparations beyond the current definition of “oil” and in doses proven effective for the variety of disease processes for which doctors will recommend these therapies. Pharmacists at these facilities would be allowed to compound creams, sprays, capsules, suppositories, lozenges, and other preparations typically dispensed at compounding pharmacies.

SB1632 allows school nurses to administer and registered patient to use their cannabis medicines at school and school-sanctioned events.

“Virginia students and their families depend on new, safely produced and regulated cannabidiol and THCA oils to treat a host of potentially debilitating conditions. However, current laws cause significant burdens for families who need to provide these medications to their children, and cause serious disruptions every single day at school for students" said Senator Glen Sturtevant.

Colorado, Illinois, and Florida allow school nurses to administer medical cannabis to students. Delaware, Maine and New Jersey allow medical cannabis use at school. Washington allows schools to create their own policies, and West Virginia directed education officials to create rules for use at school.

SB1719 allows "registered agents” for those patients physically unable to pick up or receive delivery of their medical cannabis, like those in hospice, assisted living facilities, and those who rely on home healthcare providers.

“Patient access is critical to the success of Virginia’s medical cannabis program,” said Jenn Michelle Pedini, executive director of Virginia NORML. “These bills help ensure that all patients are able to obtain and use the necessary therapeutic doses of their cannabis medicines regardless of location or physical ability."

These bills will now move through the House of Delegates. Please contact your delegate in support now!


Track these bills and all marijuana-related legislation in the 2019 General Assembly here.