South Carolina could allow prison inmates with physical or mental-health issues to be treated with cannabidiol oil, an active ingredient found in marijuana plants.
The S.C. House budget-writing committee OK’d an amendment Tuesday that would authorize the S.C. Department of Corrections to start a pilot program to study the effects of cannabidiol oil use on inmates.
South Carolina already has a law – Julian’s Law – that allows patients with certain forms of epilepsy to use cannabidiol oil.
Supporters say the oil is an effective treatment for a variety of illnesses, helping those who suffer from schizophrenia, epilepsy, anxiety and seizures. In some cases, the oil is used instead of prescription drugs.
The inmate program would be voluntary, and inmates would not be forced to join, said state Rep. Mike Pitts, the Laurens Republican who filed the budget amendment.
Pitts said the program would give S.C. lawmakers a chance to see whether using the oil saves money for the prisons agency compared to buying psychosomatic drugs, “which are extremely expensive.”
“This is a very progressive thing,” said state Rep. Bill