The House health committee approves legislation that would allow medical marijuana patients to receive the drug through an inhaler, instead of a liquid or pill. Baton Rouge Representative Ted James says his measure gives patients the option to take medicinal cannabis in a metered inhaler, similar to an asthma inhaler.

“We’re learning different ways to enhance our program because what we want to do is save lives and make lives more enjoyable for the individuals, this doesn’t open up any other additional conditions,” said James.

Medical marijuana is expected to be available at nine licensed dispensaries by the end of May. Doctors can prescribe the drug to those who suffer from chronic pain, epilepsy, seizure disorders, PTSD and other conditions. Marijuana physician, Dr. Victor Chou, says inhalation delivery can produce results in less than a minute.

“Allowing patients the option of this additional route of medication, I think will help many, many patients that are seeking treatment through this program,” said Chou.

Members of the House Health and Welfare committee heard moving testimony from veterans. An 11-year combat veteran from Belle Chasse says he’s using medical marijuana to treat P-T-S-D and he’s seeing positive results.

“It reduced the muscle tension in my body, it helped ease the pain immediately, it allowed for clarity and focus, within three months I was off all of the medication prescribed by the VA.”

Further discussion on the legislation will take place on the House floor.