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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - An Illinois House committee has approved a measure that would allow the use of marijuana for medical purposes.

The House Human Services Committee voted 11-4 Wednesday to move the proposal to the full House for consideration.

The measure would allow patients over the age of 18 who have been diagnosed with specific terminal illnesses or debilitating medical conditions to obtain marijuana.

Cancer, multiple sclerosis and HIV are among the illnesses.

Supporters say marijuana can relieve continual pain without triggering the harmful effects that other prescription drugs may commonly cause.

The measure gives a framework for a four-year pilot program that includes requiring patients and caregivers to submit background checks.

But opponents say the program would encourage the use of marijuana for recreational purposes.
Published in Local News
CHICAGO (AP) -- Illinois has received conditional federal approval for its plan to provide a health insurance marketplace where thousands of state residents will shop for insurance beginning Oct. 1.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius issued a conditional approval letter Wednesday to Gov. Pat Quinn with a list of six conditions.

Conditions include signing a memorandum of understanding with the federal government for how the state will monitor and approve health plans sold on the exchange by March 1 and a separate memorandum of understanding for how the state will run consumer outreach activities by April 1. Sebelius’ letter acknowledges that “Illinois is working under intense timelines.”

The state is partnering with the federal government to offer the online marketplace.
Published in Local News

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