9 Investigates availability of Charlotte's Web for doctors

FLORIDA — There are only 48 doctors in Florida allowed to prescribe the newest form of medical marijuana with eight in central Florida.

In 2014, the Florida Legislature approved the non-euphoric form of medical marijuana known as “Charlotte’s Web."

PDF: Florida doctors with access to Charlotte's Web

The drug, designed to help people suffering from seizures and serious brain injuries, has been delayed for months.

To prescribe the drug, doctors must complete a state-mandated course through the Florida Department of Health.

According to records obtained by 9 Investigates, there were seven doctors in central Florida who took the test, but one has left the area.  Across the rest of the state, there are four doctors in Jacksonville, and only three in all of the panhandle.

“There are going to be people from all over the state to come to those who can write it," says Dr. Ron Davis of Orlando’s Pediatric Neurology. “There's a big hope, because that patient population of intractable epilepsy needs something more."

In his office, Davis is one of two doctors authorized by the state to write a prescription for Charlotte’s Web.

While the number of doctors authorized to prescribe Charlotte’s Web has grown, the availability of the drug remains uncertain.

Earlier this year, the state approved five nurseries to grow Charlotte’s Web, however, at least 13 complaints have been filed against the state and its selection process with many smaller nurseries saying they were shut out of the selection process.