Patients react to medical marijuana delays - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Patients react to medical marijuana delays

ILLINOIS (KFVS) - The state of Illinois was expected to decide by the end of December who would receive the 21 licenses to begin the state's pilot program with medical marijuana.

Without explanation, Governor Pat Quinn's administration conceded it missed its deadline, meaning delays for patients.

One patient says he's frustrated with the state because he, along with thousands of others, are sick and can't afford to wait.

He and more than 600 other patients in Illinois have already been approved for medical marijuana use.

About 11,000 more have begun the process of getting a prescription.

Any delay means delays for seriously ill people who suffer from conditions including cancer.

He says he knows some that will do whatever it takes to find relief.

“People have different opinions about what they want to take and I see a lot of people that's in my shape and they are heading towards Oxycodone, things like that. It is the number one killer out there. It is sucking the life right out of their hearts, people are dying.” says Ben.

The lag will force cultivation center owners to break ground for new construction during the coldest winter months.

The delay pushes back the harvest of the first cannabis crop. Patients will have to wait, perhaps until summer, before they can legally use the drug.

There's no word on when decisions will be made.

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