Battle Brews Over Medical Marijuana, Organ Transplants

Seattle man dies awaiting donor liver
By Jim O'Neill,  Newser User
Posted May 19, 2008 2:27 PM CDT
Tim Garon lies in his hospital bed as his girlfriend, Leisa Bueno, leans over to give him a kiss.   (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)
camera-icon View 2 more images

(Newser) – Potential organ recipients who are using medically prescribed marijuana are being removed from transplant waiting lists, raising serious questions about transplant programs' screening processes, reports the LA Times. A Seattle man died last month after being denied a donor liver, and a critically ill man in Washington state has been bumped from two lists because he uses pot prescribed by a doctor.

"They are really killing people over this," says the lawyer for both men. Says a social worker in California, like Washington a state in which medical marijuana is legal: "If we are going to discriminate in this way, then we need to inform doctors that maybe they shouldn't be prescribing marijuana."