With only days left in the legislative session, the clock is ticking to help Texas patients get healthy.

UPDATED 5/25/2021

Yesterday, HB 1535 was heard in the Senate State Affairs Committee and passed unanimously. Now, HB 1535 awaits a debate and vote in the full Senate. In committee, HB 1535 was amended to remove chronic pain and reduce the proposed THC limit from 5% to 1%. A 1% THC cap would mean a mere 0.5% increase from the current cap, not enough for Texas patients.

The 5% THC cap, however, would have a significant impact on the health and quality of life for patients who need higher doses of THC to relieve their symptoms. Read on to learn more about the 5% THC cap and why this increase is important for patients.

The daily carrier oil intake of a medical marijuana patient in Texas under the 0.5% THC vs a 5% THC cap. With the 0.5% THC cap, this patient must take upwards of 11 syringes of oil per day, while only needing just over one syringe with a 5% THC cap.
Texas Original Compassionate Cultivation patient Blake Novacek must ingest upwards of 11 syringes of oil a day to reach his prescribed dose of THC under the current 0.5% THC cap.

How does the THC cap work?

In Texas, medical marijuana products must have no more than 0.5% THC by weight per product. Since the limit is determined by the weight of the product and not by the actual milligrams of THC, patients can achieve higher doses of THC simply by ingesting more lozenges, tincture or gummies or by taking products in combination as prescribed by their doctor. Additionally, some products may contain more THC than others and require less to reach the same dose.

However, for patients on high prescribed doses of THC, achieving their daily dose means ingesting inordinate amounts of carrier oil which can cause unnecessary gastrointestinal issues. We believe patients shouldn’t have to ingest unhealthy amounts of oil just to reach the dose that their doctor prescribed them. HB 1535 would allow for products to contain up to 5%, ten times more THC, and would allow patients to ingest less oil to access relief.

How do physicians prescribe THC in Texas?

Physicians registered in the Compassionate Use Program prescribe their patients the dose of THC they believe to be most beneficial for their symptoms. Under the current 0.5% THC cap, some patients, under the guidance of their prescribing physicians, already take upwards of 25mg a day. For many patients, achieving this dose means being able to sleep, walk without assistance, leave the house and live their lives again. However, the 0.5% THC limit forces these patients to take much more product to achieve this.

What would a 5% THC cap do?

Increasing the THC cap to 5% by weight would allow patients to consume less product, reach their prescribed dose more effectively and reduce gastrointestinal issues caused by ingesting large amounts of oil. The increase would also allow medical marijuana companies, such as Texas Original Compassionate Cultivation, to create products comparable to those in full medical states.

In conclusion, increasing the THC cap would allow patients to reach their prescribed dose of THC more effectively with less product. While the Compassionate Use Program still has some growing to do, this change would have a significant impact on the quality of life for Texas patients.

Ask Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick to Help Texas Patients

HB 1535 is running out of time to be heard in the Senate. Call (512) 463-0001 every day and tell the Lieutenant Governor to please refer HB 1535. Be courteous, but please let them know it’s important!