A Cook County judge has sided with a veteran from Urbana and ordered the state to add Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder to the list of conditions eligible for treatment with medical marijuana.
Judge Neil Cohen ordered the Department of Public Health's director to add PTSD within 30 days. The sternly worded ruling says Director Nirav Shah “engaged in a private investigation, hidden from public view'' that was “constitutionally inappropriate.''
The case was filed by Army veteran Dan Jabs, who served in Iraq.
“I provided evidence from medical journals indicating that cannabis should be used for PTSD. So if you want to argue with the science, go ahead, but you can’t just sit there and say no," said Jabs.
Jabs’ attorney, Michael Goldberg, said Shah provided no evidence to dismiss the opinion of the Medical Cannabis Advisory Board:
“It’s important to note that advisory board is made up of experts appointed by the governor’s office. So that’s the governor’s own advisory board," said Goldberg.
Public Health spokesperson Melaney Arnold said the case is under review.
Seven other lawsuits are pending in Cook County, from patients seeking other conditions added to the medical cannabis pilot program.
Governor Bruce Rauner is expected to sign a bill that recently passed the legislature. It would immediately add PTSD, as well as terminal illness to the list of qualifying conditions. The measure would also extend the pilot program from 2018 to July 2020.