Everly Family Frustrated Over Status Of Medical Marijuana In State

Everly, IA (ABC9 News) - For 13 years, Mike and Tammi Heuk have made adjustments to their home and lives for their daughter Shelby. Their cabinets are full of medicine, their van is specially equipped for Shelby, and they've spent 9-thousand dollars on a chair-system to help get her up the stairs. "Just about everything is planned around her and her needs," said Tammi Heuk, mother of Shelby.

Shelby suffers from cortical dysplasia, which causes her to have severe seizures multiple times a day, sometimes as many as 30. Her parents say they give her 25 different pills a day,7 days a week to stop the seizures from happening.   "We've tried different combinations of a lot of different drugs," said Mike Heuk, father of Shelby.

Now they say they're last ray of hope is cannabis oil. "There's other states that have programs. They work and they're functioning," said Mike.  You can possess a medical marijuana card in the state of Iowa, but it has limitations. The state doesn't allow distribution and it can't be carried across state lines.   "It's just a card that i carry in my pocket. It has no use," said Mike.  

Recently the Iowa senate passed a bill to expand medical marijuana usage, but it's not likely to pass in the house, leaving people like the Heuks frustrated with state legislatures. "I would encourage someone to find someone their district, I mean there is children everywhere that have these seizures, just spend two days with them and then take that times 365, because that's what parents go through, year-around," said Mike.  Because of the progress the state has made since last year, they were optimistic.

"You'd like to think your state can come through for you, but you only have so much time," said Mike.  Time isn't on the Heuk's side. They say their daughter's situation is getting worse.  Now they're considering moving to a state that has implemented a medical marijuana program. "It's just frustrating the state of Iowa seems to have this roadblock," said Mike.   Whether they're in Iowa or not, the Heuks will continue to fight for Shelby and others kids in her situation.

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