Good News for California Cannabis Using Organ Donors

Before California Assembly approved AB 258, the ASA-sponsored Medical Cannabis Organ Transplant Act, on Thursday of last week medical marijuana patients were being discriminated against as organ donors. Thanks to this new bill which was approved on a vote of 52-8. The bill will prevent life-threatening discrimination against medical cannabis patients in the organ transplant process.

Even with having a doctor's recommendation for medical marijuana under legal California use, patients are removed off of the organ donor waiting list, bringing into the question the legality of removing patients without their knowledge or consent. Doctors were able to successfully prove there is little to no difference in survival rates between cannabis patients and non cannabis patients that have received and organ transplant.

There were stories in the case like Norman Smith of Los Angeles who sadly passed away after being removed from the waiting list due to approved medical marijuana use. According to, "He was removed from the Wait List by Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles after testing positive for medical cannabis use in 2011." He was told to come back in six months and test negative for use, however, Mr. Norman did not have six months to wait. This bill will keep future cases like this from happening. We can begin to think other states will step up and take the same initiative California has.

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