A new bill in New Mexico would increase the maximum number of plants for each grower once the number of registered patients statewide reaches 35,000 (up from the current number of 32,000). Pictured: Cannabis plants grow in the greenhouse in Johnstown, New York in August 2016. (Drew Angerer, Getty Images)

New Mexico Senate approves new medical marijuana conditions and higher plant limits

The bill drops a provision that would have allowed military veterans to qualify as patients without a diagnosis

SANTA FE, N.M. — Revisions to New Mexico’s medical marijuana program are advancing in the New Mexico Legislature that would make room for larger crops to satisfy demand and broaden the use of cannabis as a treatment for dependence on other drugs.

The New Mexico state Senate approved revisions Monday to the state’s 2007 medical cannabis law sponsored by Sen. Cisco McSorley, D-Albuquerque. The bill now moves to the House of Representatives.

It would add to the current law 14 medical conditions that qualify for a treatment with marijuana and already have been reviewed by regulators, including patients diagnosed with substance use disorders without specifying what addictions are covered.

The bill would increase the maximum number of plants for each grower once the number of registered patients statewide reaches 35,000. There currently are about 32,000 registered patients, with growers limited to 450 plants each.

Earlier bill provisions were dropped that would have allowed military veterans to qualify as patients without a diagnosis.

Visitors enrolled in other state medical marijuana programs would be able to buy in New Mexico, under the new measures.

McSorley said the reforms address concerns voiced by patients and would lead more people to get access to treatment.