By Rick Thompson for Weed News
Americans for Safe Access (ASA) has issued its 2018-2019 State of the States report card for cannabis programs in the United States and Michigan’s ranking remains steady with a B+ grade.
The group issues the reports most years. In 2015 Michigan received a C+ and has been awarded the B+ in each report since, in 2016, 2017 and the current issue.
The report grades each state on a number of different factors including:
- Patient rights and civil protections
- Access to medicine
- Ease of navigation
- Consumer safety and provider requirements
Michigan’s program received a zero rating in the following categories:
- Housing protection for patients
- Organ transplant protection for patients
- Environmental regulations for cultivation operations
- Provisions for labor standards
- Collective gardens banned
- Patient/Practitioner-focused task force or advisory board
- Medicine costs covered by state health aid or insurance
- Product labeling for allergens
- Laboratory method validation in alignment with AHP guidance
New for the 2018-19 report is a grade on opioid response, which Michigan received only 17 out of 40 possible points. Primary causes for point loss in this category included no protection for medical cannabis users in pain management programs; no allowance for opioid use disorder in the list of qualifying conditions; and patient feedback that cannabis medicine is too expensive in Michigan.
Michigan was one of 7 states receiving a B+ grade, along with California, Hawaii, Maine, Massachusetts, Nevada and New Mexico. 2019’s report also features the first two A- grades awarded by the organization- Illinois and Oregon.
From the Report, Oregon improved it’s system greatly. “Oregon achieved an A- grade by improving packaging, labeling and pesticide regulations, ending housing discrimination against patients and allowing medical deliveries to municipalities that had banned store fronts.”
The Report’s top takeaways can be read in a blog on ASA’s website HERE. View the full report and the Michigan data HERE. The group will host a webinar on Aug. 13 at 2pm Eastern to give greater detail and take feedback on the Report. Sign up and learn more HERE.