CA Veterinary Medical Board quarterly meeting updates re: cannabis issues


Tuesday, April 16, 2019.

The Multidisciplinary Advisory Committee (MDC) had its quarterly meeting on April 16 in Riverside.   This is the committee tasked with developing the guidelines surrounding the cannabis discussion that were enacted with the passing of AB2215.  These guidelines need to be in place by Jan. 1, 2020.

Among the many items on the meeting agenda, was item #6:

Discussion and Development of Guidelines for Discussion of Cannabis with Veterinary Clients; the potential recommendation to the full board.

When this agenda item came up, there was much discussion between the board members and various speakers.   Below is a link to the current draft guidelines.  There were some adjustments and revisions suggested surrounding bullet points 1 and 9 under “Patient evaluation and Record keeping”, pages 2 and 3 of the document below.

This document and other meeting agendas can be found and freely accessed on the CA VMB website under the ‘board meetings’ tab


Wednesday, April 17, 2019.

The Veterinary Medical Board (VMB) had its quarterly meeting on April 17-18 in Riverside.

Relevant topics at this meeting included:

  1. The MDC committee chair gave his report to the full Veterinary Medical Board at this quarterly meeting. He reported that the final, finished guidelines are not likely to be published until the end of the year.  This is due to the ongoing discussions involved and the fact that further pending legislation (SB 627) will be considered this year (which the governor may have until October to sign, if passed).  The draft of the guidelines will be re-presented at the next quarterly VMB meeting in July.


  1. In addition, the VMB had on their agenda, item # 8, ‘Update, discussion and possible action on 2019 Legislation’.  Sub item J; SB 627 (Galgiani, 2019) Medicinal cannabis and medicinal cannabis products: veterinary medicine.

There is a link to the legislative items below.  (*Note that this item is labeled ‘K’ on this document)

Also embedded is a link to the text of the bill and how to track its progress.  You can access the information on the bill on the ‘News’ page of this site or via the direct link below:


There was a lengthy discussion on this matter, with public speakers that included 2 co-sponsors of the bill.  Concerns listed by some board members included:  The “recommending” of cannabis, the “dispensing” of cannabis, the need for more research, the lack of ability of the VMB to discipline a veterinarian utilizing cannabis in the case of negligence, and the definition of a “qualified veterinarian.”

While the board voted to oppose this bill as it is written, a motion was made to refer the matter to the MDC to “define the conditions needed to help the VMB move forward on this issue.”

Clearly, the story is not over and there is much more to come…

Updates to this and other VMB announcements regarding these issues will be posted as they become available.