Marcellus mom believes medical marijuana could save daughter's life

Every day Kathy Annable spends with her daughter Kaylee is a blessing because she never knows if one of her daily seizures could be the one that kills her.

"I guess that's the part that says I'm not done fighting because I'm not ready to lose my child yet," says Annable.

Kaylee, 11, suffers from Aicardi Syndrome, which among other issues, causes multiple seizures everyday. Cases have shown that a form of medical marijuana can help.

"I just have hope that this will renew us and we'll get to know our child again," says Annable.

The Compassionate Care Act passed the Health Committee this week and now moves to the Finance Committee which Senator John DeFrancisco chairs. If it comes to a vote, DeFrancisco will vote no because medical marijuana hasn't been approved by the FDA.

"It seems to me that's the prudent way to go and not just say something is medically good when the appropriate tests haven't been done," says DeFrancisco.

Brian Johnson, the Director of Addiction Medicine at SUNY Upstate Medical University, says addiction would be a concern if medical marijuana is legalized, but compared it to alcohol. He says a minority of users will get addicted and a majority will use it recreationally. If medical marijuana were to be legalized, he believes it should be regulated by the state.

"I support introducing it as a drug that is controlled by the state of New York. Anyone who found it medically useful would be welcome to go to and buy it," says Johnson.

By having medical marijuana regulated by New York, Johnson says it would minimize use and potentially bring in billions of tax revenue. The one exception he says, would be selling to children.

group of advocates stood outside Auburn all morning Friday trying to talk to Senator DeFrancisco about their support of the Compassionate Care Act.

Susan Rusinko suffers from multiple sclerosis, but says medical marijuana has improved her quality of life.

"I weighed it out. Quality of life vs. risking legal ramification. And for me my quality of life weighed out," says Rusinko.

"It might not help everybody and it might not help Kaylee. But I'm no worse yesterday than I was today and I'll be better tomorrow if the bill is passed," says Annable.

While it may be risky, advocates say if it can save someone's life, it's a risk worth taking.