Charlotte's Web: Medical marijuana bill progressing through Florida Legislature

STUART, Fla. - A Martin County family is crossing their fingers that Florida lawmakers will soon legalize a form of medical marijuana so that their child can be treated with it.

A bill going through the Legislature would legalize a form nicknamed "Charlotte's Web." Supporters say it could be beneficial to some children.
 
It's unique in that it has such low levels of Tetrahydrocannabinol, the main mind-altering ingredient found in the cannabis, supporters say children could not get "high" from using the drug.
 
It's nicknamed after a girl named Charlotte from Colorado who was able to control frequent seizures by using the drug.
 
Justin Parson's parents are on edge, even as he celebrated his ninth birthday Sunday in Stuart.
 
"We're on pins and needles all the time expecting a seizure any moment," said Justin's father, Justin Parsons Sr.
 
Justin even had a seizure during his birthday party caused by a disorder called Drevet's Syndrome.
 
"I've seen so many, hundreds, probably thousands of seizures," said Justin's mom, Brooke Parsons.
 
Justin's parents have exhausted treatment options and have him on a strict diet.
 
"We knew that there weren't very many treatment options," Brooke said.
 
That's why she wants the chance to give him a form of medical marijuana, nicknamed "Charlotte's Web." It's administered as an oil, not smoked.
 
‪"It doesn't seem fair that we can't at least try it," Brooke said.
 
Lawmakers are considering a bill that would legalize Charlotte's Web in Florida. But even some medical marijuana advocates aren't completely on board with the bill.
 
"It will be totally useless for 99 percent of the people," said Robert Platshorn.
 
He says the levels of THC that would be approved for Florida wouldn't help anyone but children, no adults and no seniors.
 
"It's like taking vitamins without minerals. It's useless," said Platshorn.
 
But the Parsons are confident that it's just what Justin needs to control the seizure‬s he's been having all of his life.
 
"We don't have time with Justin," his father said. "I need it right now. I need it this year."
 
Drevet syndrome is a degenerative disease.
 
"They need something better than that now. But, give them that. Unfortunately it just doesn't do anything for anybody else," Platshorn said.
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