DES MOINES - Medical cannabis can be grown and sold in Iowa and can be used to treat more ailments under a program expansion signed into law Friday by Gov. Terry Branstad.
The new law overhauls Iowa’s three-year-old medical cannabis program, which critics contended was too restrictive because it provided no legal path for Iowans to acquire the medicinal byproduct of the marijuana plant and covered treatment only for epileptic seizures.
A key advocate for medical cannabis expansion called the new program a step in the right direction while still falling short of reaching more ailing Iowans.
“I’m thrilled, really. I’m thrilled,” said Sally Gaer of West Des Moines, who co-founded a medical cannabis advocacy group and has a daughter with a rare form of epilepsy. “We’re hugely ahead of where we were in 2014 (with the original program). Now, we can have growth and production and testing and distribution in the state. So this is huge.