The U.S. Supreme Court rejected a request from the Bush administration to consider whether the federal government could punish doctors for even talking with patients about marijuana as a treatment. To date, nine states have legalized the medical use of marijuana if recommended or prescribed by a doctor, but federal law prohibits any use of the drug and the administration had sought to bar doctors from talking about the medical benefits of it to patients. A decision by the court in favor of the administration would have nullified the medical marijuana laws in those nine states. The original case on which the court decision is based originated in California where the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco said doctors should be allowed to speak with patients about medical use of marijuana without fear of punishment from the government but can be punished if they help the patients obtain it. -- by Tony Fong
Court rejects banning docs from talk of marijuana
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