For the first time, Georgia families are picking up state-issued cards that allow them to legally possess cannabis oil as a treatment for certain medical conditions.
PJ and Beckee Lynch of Snellville met at the health department office in Brookhaven Tuesday to pick up a card for their 8-year-old daughter Norah who suffers from Aicardi Syndrome, a rare disease that affects only girls.
“She’s been on pharmaceuticals since we brought her home at five weeks old,” said her mom, adding that the medicines have stunted her development.
Norah has many seizures a day. Her parents can deal with most of them.
“However, there are some that we have to call 911,” Beckee Lynch said. “We have oxygen at home to help because her stats drop whenever she has really big seizures.”
The card, issued by the Georgia Department of Health, allows the Lynch family to possess cannabis oil. The oil is derived from the marijuana plant. It’s low in THC, the chemical that produces the high.
The Lynches are hopeful that the oil works for Norah as it has for many others with her condition, stopping most seizures and allowing patients to wean off pharmaceuticals.
“Norah has a very limited life span, and the girls who pass away (from Aicardi Syndrome) do so from massive seizures,” said Beckee Lynch. “So we’re really hoping that this is going to bless her and that it’s going to be the answer to keep her safe and healthy.”
Growing or cultivating marijuana remains illegal in Georgia, so most card-carrying families are ordering their cannabis oil from reputable producers in other states where it’s legal to grow it for medicinal purposes.