On December 14, 2017, the West Virginia Medical Cannabis Advisory Board announced: (1) the results of informal surveys to gauge patient need and physician interest in participation in the new medical cannabis program scheduled to be rolled out July 1, 2019; and (2) proposed rules to govern the implementation of medical cannabis programs in West Virginia.
Patient Survey Results
The first survey was to determine whether there is sufficient patient need among those that have a qualifying diagnosis to receive medical cannabis by surveying patients directly, and by reviewing data from the Public Employees Insurance Agency (PEIA) and the state Medicaid program. Among the qualifying conditions that allow a patient to receive a recommendation for marijuana under West Virginia’s law are chronic pain, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), neuropathy, and cancer. In the patient survey, 2,120 patient responders reported that they suffered from chronic pain, 1,579 reported that they had PTSD, 807 reported neuropathies, and 694 reported cancer. In reviewing PEIA data for two years, there were 8,632 claims submitted for neuropathies, 8,378 submitted claims for cancer, 6,561 submitted claims for