Blog Voices from the Frontlines
By Maui Now
Hawaiʻi Department of Health has received a “B” and was ranked the fifth highest in the nation for its medical marijuana program, based on a recent report card of new, regulated medical marijuana distribution programs issued by Americans for Safe Access.
The national organization’s mission is to reduce barriers to medical cannabis by creating policies to improve access for patients and researchers, using legislation, education, litigation, research and other means.
According to the report card, “Hawaiʻi is on track to become one of the best programs in the country if they continue with their timely implementation.”
Approval of the First Medical Cannabis Grow Operation in Maryland Granted to Patient Focused Certified Company - Americans for Safe Access
Last week, Maryland regulators issued the first license to grow medical cannabis in Maryland to ForwardGro, a company with a 1-acre greenhouse located in Anne Arundel County. This decision comes more than four years after Maryland first approved a medical cannabis program.
By Steph Sherer for The Hill
The phrase “no news is good news” should mean an assurance that a situation is not dramatically worsening, and perhaps even improving. For the first 100 days of Trump’s Presidency, the lack of news surrounding medical cannabis has been, for the most part, good news for the status quo. However, this is not a comfort to medical cannabis patients for whom behind the scenes actions could upend, disrupt, or delay access to their medication.
A large majority of drug prosecution cases occur on the state level. But when federal prosecutors get involved, the consequences can be much more serious. It’s unclear whether a recent memo issued by the Department of Justice could apply to medical cannabis patients following their state laws.
By Francisco Alvarado for Vice
Trump's Signing Statement Has Left Patients Scratching their Heads: What Does it Mean? - Americans for Safe Access
Last Friday, President Donald Trump signed H.R. 244, the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2017, into law. This budget bill will fund the government through September 30, 2017. Included in the appropriations bill was language that prohibits the Department of Justice from using funds to limit the implementation of state medical cannabis programs.
In the May 2017 Issue:
- Medical Cannabis Protections Renewed by Congress
- Indiana Enacts Law Allowing CBD for Epilepsy
- Wisconsin Enacts CBD Law
- California Releases Proposed Cannabis Regulations
- Mexico Legislature Passes Medical Marijuana Bill
- International Group OKs Development of Cannabis Standards
- ASA National Unity Conference a Success
- Free Online Cannabis Health Summit May 6-7
- ACTION ALERT: Support More Federal Action, Join ASA Today
“Whether or not doctors or other health care professionals have any intention of recommending medical cannabis for patient care, they all need to be well educated in this clinical area because their patients will be seeking their expert advice and guidance for this medication,” noted Stephen B. Corn, MD, a specialist in anesthesiology, perioperative and pain medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Children’s Hospital, both in Boston. Since patients may already be using medical marijuana, clinicians “need to be aware of the physiological effects of cannabis as well as potential drug interactions and side effects,” Dr. Corn added, stressing that expertise in medical cannabis will be necessary for most doctors, pharmacists, nurses and other health care professionals.
After passing a temporary stopgap budget measure, Congress has funded the Government through September 30, 2017. Included in the Appropriations bill is a provision that prevents the Department of Justice from expending federal funds to prevent the implementation of state medical cannabis programs. The Appropriations bill also includes protections for states with industrial hemp programs
For medical cannabis patients, one of the hardest conversations to have may be with family and friends. After negotiating the hurdles of registering as a patient, finding a physician that will recommend medical cannabis, and finding a dispensary close to home, the last thing many patients may not anticipate is an intense conversation about their new medicine with their loved ones.