From Joe D. Goldstrich, MD, SCC liaison to the Medical Board of California, October 26, 2015:

Hello everybody. I’m sorry to have to bring this to your attention. I began reviewing the materials for the upcoming medical board meeting on Thursday and Friday of this week. The materials include the analysis of SB 643 by Jennifer Simoes, Chief of Legislation for the Medical Board.

I would copy and paste her full analysis into this email, but the medical board materials on line do not allow copying or printing. I’m going to dictate the paragraphs that I believe everyone should see and then at the end of this email I will post the link and page number within the document so you can read it for yourself.

“This bill prohibits a physician from recommending cannabis to a patient unless that physician is the patient’s attending physician, as defined by subdivision (a) of section 11362.7 of the Health and Safety Code (HSC). The HSC defines an “attending physician” as an individual who possesses a license in good standing…… and who has taken responsibility for an aspect of the medical care, treatment, diagnosis, counseling, or referral of a patient. The physician also must have conducted a medical examination of that patient before recording in the patient’s medical record the physician’s assessment of whether the patient has a serious medical condition and whether the medical use of marijuana is appropriate” 

“This bill also subjects physicians recommending cannabis to the definition of “financial interest”in business and professions code section (BPC) 650.01 and does not allow a physician to accept, solicit, or offer any form of remuneration from or to a licensed dispenser, producer, or processor of cannabis products in which the licensee or his or her immediate family has a financial interest. This bill does not allow a cannabis clinic or dispensary to directly or indirectly employ physicians to provide marijuana recommendations, a violation would constitute unprofessional conduct. This bill does not allow a person to distribute any form of advertising for physician recommendations for medical cannabis unless the advertisement contains a notice to consumers, as specified.”

“Lastly, this bill specifies that a violation of the new section of law regulating medical cannabis recommendations is a misdemeanor and punishable by up to one year in county jail and a fine up to $5000 or by civil penalties of up to $5000 and shall constitute unprofessional conduct”   page 118

Retro Message:  Either the drafters didn’t know the meaning of “cannabis clinic,” or they did. Either way… This might call for more than watchful waiting.  —Fred