COLUMBUS (WCMH) — A new bill at the Ohio Statehouse looks to expand the state’s medical marijuana program to include conditions like arthritis, autism, and opioid use disorder.

Senator Stephen Huffman (R-Tipp City) recently introduced Senate Bill 261. The legislation allows doctors to use their discretion when prescribing cannabis and includes several conditions that were previously left out.

“It emphasizes the patient-physician relationship and uses the physician knowledge, his training, and his background to make the decision,” Huffman said.

It’s a big step for Ohio, but some say it’s too big. The Prevention Action Alliance said it is concerned considering the state’s struggle with opioids.

“So many people thought that utilizing prescription drugs was safe because it was a prescribed substance and I’m afraid we are moving in that direction when it comes to medical marijuana,” said Fran Gerbig, executive director of Prevention Action Alliance.

Marijuana advocates said there is no comparison between medical marijuana and opioids.

“The opioid epidemic has killed tens of thousands of Americans, so someone saying that we should not be expanding access to medical cannabis as though it’s an equally dangerous option as opioids is ridiculous,” said Matthew Schweich, deputy director of the Marijuana Policy Project.

The conversation around adult-use marijuana has recently heated up at the Ohio Statehouse as well, but Huffman said they are two different conversations.

“I wish them well, but I’m concentrating on medical marijuana and trying to make that industry better for the patient and business,” he said.

The bill will have its first hearing on Wednesday, where those on both sides of the issue will testify.