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US SC: Opioid Alternative Or Gateway To Legal Pot?

March 29, 2018 - 3:00am
The State, 29 Mar 2018 - Medical marijuana cleared a key committee on Thursday and headed to the floor of the S.C. Senate. But the 8-6 vote by the Senate Medical Affairs Committee came as enforcement leaders are hardening their opposition, saying it is another step toward legalized recreational marijuana in the Palmetto State.

US NJ: Gov. Murphy Greatly Expands New Jersey's Medical Marijuana

March 27, 2018 - 3:00am
Philadelphia Daily News, 27 Mar 2018 - Gov. Murphy greatly expanded New Jersey's medical marijuana program Tuesday, opening the door to tens of thousands of new patients and allowing the five dispensaries spread across the state to add satellite retail centers and cultivation facilities. The governor added to the list of ailments that qualify for a cannabis prescription. He also cleared the way for any doctor in the state to prescribe cannabis, ending a system in which only those physicians who registered -- and thus, joined a publicly available list of providers - -- could do so. He said some doctors had been reluctant to participate in the program because they viewed joining the list as a stigma.

US KY: Sen. McConnell On hemp: 'Make This A Legal Crop'

March 27, 2018 - 3:00am
Philadelphia Daily News, 27 Mar 2018 - FRANKFORT, Ky. -- The U.S. Senate's top leader said Monday he wants to bring hemp production back into the mainstream by removing it from the controlled substances list that now associates it with its cousin – marijuana. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told hemp advocates in his home state of Kentucky that he will introduce legislation to legalize the crop as an agricultural commodity. The versatile crop has been grown on an experimental basis in a number of states in recent years.

US FL: Rope, Not Dope: UF To Tackle Hemp Research

March 27, 2018 - 3:00am
Sarasota Herald-Tribune, 27 Mar 2018 - GAINESVILLE -- The University of Florida could start growing industrial hemp as soon as the fall. But the project still has to pass some hurdles before planting begins, said Rob Gilbert, chairman of the UF/IFAS agronomy department.

US HI: Cure Oahu Begins Cannabis Sales

March 27, 2018 - 3:00am
Honolulu Star-Advertiser, 27 Mar 2018 - Cure Oahu, backed by a local private investment group, opened with 10 strains, including top sellers Master Kush, Da Glue, Sour Chem and Sunset Mango. The dispensary in the former Bank of Hawaii branch building at 727 Kapahulu Ave. said there was heavy demand for indica, sativa and hybrid flower strains as well as tinctures and lozenges, which sold out shortly after opening. The 5,434-square-foot building has had a major makeover with a high-tech, 2,400-square-foot open lobby and dispensing area with two private consultation booths and large electronic tablet stations where customers can browse through information and choose from a variety of strains. Patients are also able to register and order products online before coming into the dispensary.

US FL: Company Files Lawsuit Challenging Orlando's Medical Marijuana

March 26, 2018 - 3:00am
Orlando Sentinel, 26 Mar 2018 - A company that planned to open a medical marijuana dispensary south of downtown Orlando is challenging the city's ordinance regulating such businesses, alleging it violates state law. Surterra Florida, which operates five dispensaries statewide, filed the suit in Orange County Circuit Court last week and is asking a judge to rule Orlando's law is "invalid and unenforceable." Tallahassee Attorney William Hall, who filed the suit, is also seeking a temporary injunction to keep the city from enforcing the law while the court rules.

US PA: Are There Risks From Secondhand Marijuana Smoke? Early Science

March 26, 2018 - 3:00am
Philadelphia Daily News, 26 Mar 2018 - The inspiration arrived in a haze at a Paul McCartney concert a few years ago in San Francisco. "People in front of me started lighting up and then other people started lighting up," said Matthew Springer, a biologist and professor in the division of cardiology at the University of California-San Francisco. "And for a few naive split seconds I was thinking to myself, 'Hey, they can't smoke in AT&T Park! I'm sure that's not allowed.' And then I realized that it was all marijuana."

US MO: Medical Marijuana Narrowly Rejected By Kansas House

March 26, 2018 - 3:00am
Kansas City Star, 26 Mar 2018 - The Kansas House of Representatives rejected medical marijuana legalization Monday. But the closeness of the 54-69 vote and the hour of emotional testimony that preceded it made advocates more confident that Kansas is now closer to joining the 30 states that allow marijuana by prescription.

US IL: In The Era Of Legalization, How Do You Discuss Marijuana With

March 21, 2018 - 3:00am
Chicago Tribune, 21 Mar 2018 - KIDS? "My uncle is prescribed marijuana." "My parents use it, and they're doing fine."

US MA: There's More To That Dartmouth Study Trump Mentioned In His

March 21, 2018 - 3:00am
Boston Globe, 21 Mar 2018 - When President Trump took the stage in New Hampshire on Monday and delivered a fiery speech about how the White House plans to tackle the nationwide opioid problem, he leaned heavily on the idea that the Massachusetts city of Lawrence was largely to blame for the scourge of addiction in the Granite State. Citing a 2017 study by researchers at Dartmouth College's Geisel School of Medicine, the president said the "sanctuary city" of Lawrence, a community that restricts its cooperation with federal immigration officials, is one of "the primary sources of fentanyl in six New Hampshire counties."

US SC: Medical Marijuana Slowly Gaining Acceptances In SC This Year

March 21, 2018 - 3:00am
The State, 21 Mar 2018 - When Mack Hudson of Lexington was 16 years old, he was paralyzed when he fractured his skull, broke his neck and shattered a key vertebrae in a car wreck. Over the past 10 years, he's been prescribed increasing doses of opioids -- Percocet and Roxycodone to alleviate the pain.

US OH: Editorial: There Is No Magic Solution For The Opioid Crisis

March 21, 2018 - 3:00am
The Blade, 21 Mar 2018 - President Trump's proposal to invoke the death penalty for drug traffickers is an idea that is, in the practical scheme of things, unworkable. It is also probably unconstitutional and obviously simplistic. It is a gimmick, not a policy. We need a policy.

US: Death Penalty For Drug Dealers Is Not A New Idea

March 21, 2018 - 3:00am
Boston Globe, 21 Mar 2018 - WASHINGTON - President Trump's plan to use the death penalty on drug dealers has all the hallmarks of his favorite policies: It could fit on the front of a baseball cap. It is a proven applause line. It appeals to a conservative base. But, like so many of Trump's slogans-turned-policy, it's dredged from a bygone era and lacks clear evidence showing it would be effective.

US SC: SC Senators Kill Proposal To Study Cannabis Oil On Inmates

March 20, 2018 - 3:00am
The State, 20 Mar 2018 - An S.C. Senate panel quickly killed a proposal Tuesday that would have created a study committee to research the effects of cannabidiol oil - -- an active ingredient found in marijuana -- on prison inmates with physical and mental illnesses. The oil -- used sometimes in place of prescription drugs -- can be an effective treatment for people who suffer from epilepsy, schizophrenia and seizures, supporters say.

US PA: Safe Injection Site Stirs Tensions At Northeast Philly Meeting

March 19, 2018 - 3:00am
Philadelphia Daily News, 19 Mar 2018 - Midway through a community meeting in Northeast Philadelphia on the opioid crisis Monday, a man stood up at the back of the room and yelled out a question to city Health Commissioner Thomas Farley: "Doctor, where do you live? Can we put a safe injection site next door to you?" The crowd of 150 in the Fox Chase community center applauded and burst into shouts in a display that vividly showed the tough sales job the city is facing as it tries to fulfill a promise to allow a place where people in addiction can use drugs under medical supervision. As heroin has been adulterated with the deadlier opioid fentanyl, often without the user's knowledge, the overdose death rate has soared. Quick administration of a reversal medicine can save lives.

US IL: Oped: The Opioid Epidemic And 'Do No Harm'

March 19, 2018 - 3:00am
Daily Herald, 19 Mar 2018 - Historically opioid medications were used cautiously by physicians for selected patients to reduce pain associated with acute injury or illness, and for those suffering from life-threatening diseases such as cancer. This caution was based upon recognition that improper use of opioids could result in patient harm. However, in 1996, the American Pain Society, supported by opioid pharmaceutical manufacturers, promoted acknowledgment and expanded treatment of pain as the 'fifth vital sign" by physicians in hospitals. In 2001, the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations introduced new pain standards recognizing the under-assessment and treatment of pain, which then expanded the use of opioids. In the two decades that followed opioid use and abuse has exploded, with nearly 80 percent of the world's opioid medications now being consumed in the U.S.

US: Trump Calls For Death Penalty To 'get Tough' On Drug Pushers

March 19, 2018 - 3:00am
Sun-Sentinel, 19 Mar 2018 - Unveiling a long-awaited plan to combat the national scourge of opioid drug addiction, President Donald Trump called Monday for stiffer penalties for drug traffickers, including embracing a tactic employed by some of the global strongmen he admires: the death penalty. "Toughness is the thing that they most fear," Trump said.

US CA: Pot and Justice: Stark Contrasts In 2 Cities

March 18, 2018 - 3:00am
New York Times, 18 Mar 2018 - OAKLAND, Calif. - When officers burst into Rickey McCullough's two-story home in Oakland a decade ago they noted a "strong fresh odor of marijuana." Mr. McCullough had been growing large amounts of marijuana illegally, the police said. He was arrested and spent a month in jail. A few weeks ago the city of Oakland, now promoting itself as a hub for marijuana entrepreneurs, awarded Mr. McCullough, 33, a license to sell marijuana and the prospect of interest-free loans.

US PA: How A Federal Judge In Philly Could Blow Up The Marijuana

March 16, 2018 - 3:00am
Philadelphia Daily News, 16 Mar 2018 - Is a marijuana dispensary an "unlawful" business? A federal judge in Philadelphia will decide. This arcane dispute over language in the deed of a marijuana dispensary in Northeast Philadelphia could carry outsized implications: A ruling by U.S. District Judge Gene Pratter could affirm the superiority of federal law, which considers marijuana illegal, over state law, where in Pennsylvania and 29 other states, it is not.

US PA: Pennsylvania Issues Regulations For Medical Marijuana Clinical

March 16, 2018 - 3:00am
Morning Call, 16 Mar 2018 - The Pennsylvania Department of Health has issued new regulations for medical marijuana clinical research programs. The regulations, released Friday, outline the process for an accredited medical school with an acute care hospital to become an approved "Academic Clinical Research Center" that can engage in medical marijuana-related research projects with "clinical registrants," an entity that can grow, process and dispense medical marijuana.

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