Recently, Pennsylvania became the twenty-fourth state to legalize medical marijuana. The Philly Voice reports that the new medical cannabis legislation will officially go into effect a month after Governor Tom Wolf signed it on April 17th. However, the “timeline to develop an operative system—growers, processors, dispensaries, and providers—is expected to take between 18-24 months.” Earlier this week, Wolf reported to a radio station that those who are allowed to use medical marijuana should be able to have their medicine even sooner than that, stating that medical marijuana could be “imported to Pennsylvania as an interim step.”

“People should be able to start using these medicines really quickly,” Wolf stated. “If someone were to go to another state and buy it legally and bring it back for medicinal purposes, I kind of doubt that most prosecutors would pursue a case even right now… We are trying to give relief to families, and I think it would be much appreciated by the families, and it would be consistent with the will of the General Assembly and the people they represent. This is relief we’d like to be able to start getting as soon as possible.”

While on the radio, Wolf highlighted that this does not mean that legalizing marijuana for recreational purposes is going to be considered anytime soon.

“The two aren’t linked at all,” Wolf emphasized. “This is not a gateway to anything other than reinforcing what we’ve always done, and that is [to] allow doctors, encourage doctors, to do what they can do to make the lives of their patients more comfortable.”

Under this new program, patients who have one or more of the seventeen conditions listed, including cancer, Crohn’s disease and severe chronic or intractable pain, will be able to get their hands on medical marijuana in pill, oil or ointment form.

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