Pediatric nurse appointed to Arkansas marijuana board

Pediatric nurse appointed to Arkansas marijuana board

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — A pediatric nurse has been appointed to the Arkansas Medical Marijuana Commission.

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reports that Justin Smith was appointed to the board Monday. The 38-year-old is a nurse at Arkansas Children's Hospital. He replaces James Miller, who resigned last month to focus on his family and business.

Smith says he's seen cannabis products help treat children with epilepsy. Republican Senate President Pro Tempore Jonathan Dismang says Smith's clinical experience was key to his appointment.

The five-member commission is scheduled to consider more than 200 applications on Wednesday for the state's first 32 medical cannabis dispensary permits. Regulators say dispensaries could begin selling medical cannabis in April.

Arkansas voters approved a constitutional amendment legalizing medical marijuana in 2016, but the implementation process has been slow compared to other states.

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Information from: Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, http://www.arkansasonline.com