The Minnesota Department of Health's Office of Medical Cannabis is hosting the listening session at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday at the Rochester Public Library. Minnesota's new medical marijuana law requires the state's health commissioner to determine by Jan. 1 whether intractable pain should be added to the list of qualifying conditions. Intractable pain is defined in state law as “a pain state in which the cause of the pain cannot be removed or otherwise treated with the consent of the patient and in which, in the generally accepted course of medical practice, no relief or cure of the cause of the pain is possible, or none has been found after reasonable efforts.”
There are currently nine qualifying conditions, including cancer, multiple sclerosis and terminal illnesses.
Non-smokeable medical marijuana became legal in the state on July 1. Minnesota Medical Solutions opened a dispensary in Rochester a month ago — the first dispensary in greater Minnesota to open. A total of eight dispensaries are scheduled to open across the state.
Office of Medical Cannabis Director Michelle Larson said the public meetings offer residents a chance to weigh in on the medical cannabis program and its future.
"We’re looking forward to meeting with people to answer their questions when we can. It’s also important for us to hear directly from Minnesotans about how the program can best serve them and their loved ones," Larson said in a statement.