State health regulators to unveil medical marijuana regulations March 29

Eagerly anticipated draft regulations for the use of medical marijuana in Massachusetts will be issued on March 29, public health regulators said Wednesday morning.

Interim Deputy Public Health Commissioner Cheryl Bartlett said the draft regulations will be filed with the Secretary of State’s office that day and also posted on the department’s website.

The draft regulations will be formally presented to the Public Health Council—an appointed board of doctors, educators, and policy specialists—on April 10 for a “comprehensive discussion that will serve as our primary opportunity to engage in substantive deliberation” about how to shape the policy, Bartlett said.

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Massachusetts voters in November overwhelmingly approved a ballot question that allowed patients with certain medical conditions to obtain marijuana for medical use and required health department to issue regulations by May 1 to implement the law.

Health officials have acknowledged they will miss that target date. The timeline announced Wednesday morning anticipates that the council will approve final regulations on May 8, following a public hearing scheduled for April 19.

If the council approves the regulations, they will go into effect May 24, Bartlett said