New Orleans Family Fights for Medical Marijuana

New Orleans resident Kelly Fournier is on a mission to possibly change her 15 year old daughter’s life.

Sloane Fournier was diagnosed with Trisomy 18, a chromosomal disorder where the eighteenth chromosome is tripled. She was diagnosed as a baby and stopped developing by the age of six while also beginning to have increased seizures.

Fournier believes the cannabinoid oil found in cannabis plants could potentially stop the seizures and return Sloane to a more active state.

“I think it will work. I think it will stop the seizures and allow her to do the things that she once did, like swimming which she loves,” said Fournier.

The Fournier’s have consulted with Sloane’s doctors who nearly all agree that more testing needs to be done before recommending the treatment for Sloane. However, one doctor believes medical marijuana is the answer.

“Her geneticist thinks it will work, but we can’t get access to it to find out definitively,” Fournier said.

Representative Austin Badon, D-La, co-authored a bill in this year’s legislative session that would allow for the medicinal use of marijuana. Other marijuana legislation at this year’s session has been met with uncertainty.

“At this point, I don’t think it will pass. There’s a lot of work that needs to be done to get the votes needed,” said Badon.

Meanwhile, Fournier is continuing to push the issue by writing to state leaders and speaking at a legislative committee meeting analyzing the feasibility of marijuana.

While she would rather not leave the state again for medical treatment for Sloane, Fournier says as a last resort she would if it meant a somewhat normal life for Sloane.

“We don’t want to leave. We have a great support system here but if it could help Sloane, we’ll go. We just have to at least try it at this point.”


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