Study: Medical Cannabis Patients Use Less Opioids, Antidepressants, Sleep Medications and Alcohol

By Elara Mosquera, saludmó (republished with special permission)

Upon using medical cannabis, patients in pain and those suffering from other medical conditions reduced their use of opioids, antidepressants, sleep medications, alcohol, and other dangerous substances, according to a new study published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology.

saludmóvil™ had a chance to speak with a lead researcher on the study, Brian J. Piper, PhD, MS, Assistant Professor of Neuroscience in the Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine.

“So what we found is that after starting medical marijuana that many of the patients that were previously using opioids reduced the use of those agents,” Dr. Piper said. “So over three-quarters of the medical marijuana patients who were using opioids decreased the use of those agents.”

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California CBD Bill Passes Two Committees Unanimously

Cannabidiol (CBD) legislation in California has been passed by two Assembly committees, both unanimously.

Assembly Bill 845 was passed earlier this month by the Assembly Health Committee, and on Wednesday was given approval by the Assembly Appropriations Committee; both committees passed the bill unanimously with a combined vote of 30 to 0.

According to the proposal; “Existing law, the California Uniform Controlled Substances Act, classifies controlled substances into 5 designated schedules, with the most restrictive limitations generally placed on controlled substances classified in Schedule I, and the least restrictive limitations generally placed on controlled substances classified in Schedule V. Existing law places marijuana in Schedule I. Cannabidiol is a compound found in marijuana.” Existing law also “restricts the prescription, furnishing, possession, sale, and use of controlled substances, including marijuana and synthetic cannabinoid compounds, and makes a violation of those laws a crime, except as specified.”

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California Marijuana Company Donates 500,000 Meals, Hopes to Donate 1 Million by Thanksgiving

Bloom Farms, a San Francisco-based marijuana company, has donated 500,000 meals to nonprofit food banks throughout the state, CEO Michael Ray has announced.

For every Bloom Farms product sold, the one-for-one cannabis business donates money to food banks across the state to cover the cost of sourcing and distributing a healthy meal to a family or individual in need. One Bloom Farms item sold has equaled one healthy meal donated since the Bay Area company started its one-for-one program in December of 2015.

“True corporate responsibility involves investing equally in the success of your business and the social good,” says Ray. “It’s always been important to me that Bloom Farms grows into a different kind of cannabis company, and I couldn’t be prouder of this team and this very important milestone.”

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WA Attorney General Launches Petition Urging Trump Administration to Respect State Marijuana Laws

Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson has launched a petition urging the President Trump and his Administration to respect state marijuana laws.

Washington State AG Bob Ferguson.

“One in five Americans live in a state where the voters have chosen to legalize, regulate, and tax marijuana”, begins the petition. “These regulations are keeping our communities safe from crime and new jobs and industries are being created.”

It continues; “Unfortunately, the president’s spokesman recently threatened a coming crackdown on legal marijuana – threatening to override not just state law but also the will of millions of voters. If that happens, these states will lose billions in tax revenue and crime will once again flourish as marijuana returns to the black market.”

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Berlin Researchers Hope to Recruit 25,000 Marijuana Consumers for Massive Study

A research initiative is hoping to get approval for a study that would require recruiting 25,000 marijuana consumers in Berlin.

According to The Local, the group called the Research Initiative on Cannabis Consumption is hoping to get an application for a new study approved so that they can analyze the “consequences of cannabis for psychologically healthy, adult consumers”. The aim is to “understand what effects cannabis use has after several years”, according to the group, which was started by an attorney and a clinical psychology professor at the Medical School Hamburg.

The group reported last week that they submitted an updated application to the Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices (BfArM) for approval.

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New York Committee Votes Unanimously to Allow Medical Marijuana for PTSD

A key legislative committee in New York has voted to add post traumatic stress disorder to the state’s list of qualifying medical marijuana conditions.

Assembly Bill 7006 was passed yesterday by the Assembly Health Committee with a unanimous 26 to 0 vote. The proposal is sponsored by a bipartisan coalition of 36 Assemblymembers (30 Democrats and 6 Republicans). The measure must now be passed by a second committee before it can be scheduled for a vote by the full Assembly.

Both Assembly Bill 7006 and its companion legislation Senate Bill 5629 would allow those with PTSD to legally purchase, possess and use cannabis and cannabis medicines if they receive a recommendation from a physician and become registered with the state as a medical cannabis patient.

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Legal Marijuana Sales Exceeded $45 Million on April 20 (4/20)

There was over $45 million in legal marijuana sold on April 20 (4/20), the unofficial cannabis holiday, according to a new report.

MJ Freeway, a leading provider of seed-to-sale tracking for the cannabis industry, reports that cannabis retail sales for April 20 exceeded $45 million, a 20% increase compared to the 2016 holiday.

Prior to 4/20, MJ Freeway predicted a 20% increase in retail cannabis sales and a 10% increase in customer traffic. MJ Freeway’s predictions and reports are based on sales data figures compiled through analysis of their majority cannabis retail market share.

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Nevada Hemp Legalization Bill Passed Unanimously by Senate

Nevada’s Senate has unanimously voted to legalize the production and cultivation of industrial hemp.

The Senate passed Senate Bill 396 with a unanimous 20 to 0 vote, with one member absent. This send it to the House of Representatives, where passage would put it to the desk of Governor Brian Sandoval for consideration.

Existing Nevada law authorizes an institution of higher education or the state’s Department of Agriculture to grow or cultivate industrial hemp for purposes of research conducted under an agricultural pilot program or for other agricultural or academic research. Section 2-21 of Senate Bill 396 creates “a separate program for the growth and cultivation of industrial hemp and produce agricultural hemp seed in this State”, allowing hemp to be grown for commercial purposes.

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Denver City Council Passes Ordinance to Allow Marijuana Outlets to Stay Open Longer

An ordinance extending the hours marijuana businesses can remain open has been passed by Denver’s full City Council.

The council approved the ordinance with an 11 to 2 vote. The new law allows marijuana retail outlets to stay open an additional three hours. Starting May 1st, such outlets must be closed by 10pm; under current Denver regulations, marijuana businesses are prohibited from remaining open past 7pm.

The council rejected amendments to reduce the amount of hours outlets can stay open, including an amendment from Councilmember Chris Herndon that would have prevented marijuana businesses from opening prior to 9am, compared to the current allowed opening time of 8am.

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Nevada Senate Votes to Add Opioid Addiction as Qualifying Medical Marijuana Condition

A bill to allow those with opioid addiction to legally possess and use medical marijuana – along with some other changes – has been passed by Nevada’s full Senate.

Nevada Senate Bill 374 was given approval yesterday by the state’s Senate with a 12 to 9 vote, sending it to the House of Representatives for consideration. According to its official legislative digest, the measure would include opioid addiction within the definition of “chronic or debilitating medical condition”. Section 1.5 of the proposal “prohibits a professional licensing board from taking disciplinary action against a person licensed by the board on the basis that the person holds a validly issues registry identification card or engages in lawful activity, pursuant to the person’s licensed profession, relating to the medical use of marijuana or to a registered medical marijuana establishment”.

Section 2 of the measure “prohibits a professional licensing board from taking disciplinary action on the basis that the person engages in lawful activity, pursuant to the person’s licensed profession, relating to: (1) the recreational use of marijuana; or (2) a licensed marijuana establishment.”

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