Medical marijuana: 7 reasons why Ohio won’t be selling medical marijuana this week

Sell medical marijuana to patients suffering from cancer, post-traumatic stress disorder and epilepsy. Set up a well-regulated, safe industry. Do it all in two years. Start this Saturday.

But that didn’t happen. Patients won’t have medical cannabis in their hands by the Sept. 8 deadline set by lawmakers when they passed a bill legalizing the treatment more than two years ago.

Of the 26 businesses selected to grow cannabis in Ohio, just four have passed inspections to begin planting seeds. The first seeds were planted July 31 and will take 16 to 22 weeks to reach maturity.

If those plants are going to be processed into oils, edibles and other products, Ohio will likely need more than the 10 processors that have met the state’s requirements so far. More than 100 businesses applied, but few passed muster.

Ohio is not the first state to legalize medical marijuana. It could have learned from states like Maine, which ramped up a basic program within a year, said Karen O’Keefe, director of state policies for the Marijuana Policy Project. Pennsylvania’s law legalizing medical cannabis took effect in May 2016 and the first product was sold this February.

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U.S. frats opt for stricter booze policy in wake of deaths

Hundreds of fraternity houses across the US will no longer allow frat members to serve hard liquor, according to a self-governing policy announced Tuesday in the wake of growing outrage over alcohol-related hazing deaths.

The North-American Interfraternity Conference (NIC) policy effectively means that most of the nation’s fraternities cannot dole out strong booze unless it is served by a licensed third-party vendor.

“At their core, fraternities are about brotherhood, personal development and providing a community of support,” Judson Horras, CEO and president of the NIC, said in a statement. “Alcohol abuse and its serious consequences endanger this very purpose. This action shows fraternities’ clear commitment and leadership to further their focus on the safety of members.”

The NIC is an umbrella organization for fraternities. The group said the new policy was reached in a near-unanimous vote and must be adopted by more than 6,100 of its chapters by September 2019. Those chapters are located on 800 campuses throughout the country.

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Safe injection sites were thought to reduce drug overdoses. The research isn’t so clear.

A new meta-analysis reviewed the evidence on safe injection sites. There’s bad news.

In response to the opioid epidemic, several cities, from New York City to Seattle, are considering a controversial policy: allowing spaces where people can, under supervision, inject heroin and use other drugs. The idea is that if people are going to use drugs anyway, there might as well be places where those drug users can be supervised in case something goes wrong.

“After a rigorous review of similar efforts across the world, and after careful consideration of public health and safety expert views, we believe overdose prevention centers will save lives and get more New Yorkers into the treatment they need to beat this deadly addiction,” New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said in a statement earlier this year.

But a new study has found that these places, known as supervised drug consumption sites, safe injection sites, and many other names, may not be as effective at preventing overdose deaths and other drug-related problems as once thought. According to a new review of the research published in the International Journal of Drug Policy, safe consumption sites appear to have only a small favorable relation to drug-related crimes but no significant effect on several other outcomes, including overdose mortality and syringe sharing.

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Almost one in 20 U.S. adults now use e-cigarettes

Roughly 10.8 million American adults are currently using e-cigarettes, and more than half of them are under 35 years old, a U.S. study suggests.

One in three e-cigarette users are vaping daily, researchers report in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

“Electronic cigarette use is also closely associated with other high-risk behaviors,” said senior study author Dr. Michael Blaha, director of clinical research for the Johns Hopkins Ciccarone Center for the Prevention of Heart Disease in Baltimore. “The most common pattern of use in the U.S. is dual use, i.e. current use of both traditional cigarettes and electronic cigarettes.”

Twenty-somethings, smokers of traditional cigarettes, unemployed adults, and people who identify as lesbian, bisexual, gay, and transgender (LGBT) are more likely than other individuals to use e-cigarettes, the study also found.

“It is becoming clear that specific vulnerable groups are at highest risk of adopting electronic cigarettes,” Blaha said by email.

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What Corona Owner’s $4 Billion Bet on a Marijuana Firm Says About Pot’s Future

What does a beer company do to hedge against slowing growth in its main business? In the case of the parent company of Corona, the answer is to invest heavily in the marijuana industry.

Constellation Brands, which also makes Robert Mondavi wine and Svedka vodka, announced on Wednesday that it had invested $4 billion in Canopy Growth, a publicly traded Canadian cannabis producer. The deal comes nearly 10 months after Constellation first took a 10 percent stake in Canopy to help create nonalcoholic cannabis-infused drinks and other products.

Constellation’s investment in Canopy, the biggest known deal in the marijuana industry, shows just how far traditional alcoholic beverage companies are willing to go to find growth. As sales of beer fall in the United States, brewers have begun to bet that legalization of marijuana around the globe, especially the United States, will continue to build momentum and sales of cannabis products will take off.

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CBD Oil – legal or not?

The advertisements flood inboxes using marketing lures like “vegan”, “all natural”, and “organic.” These terms draw consumers in while providing vague claims of being a health supplement, a sleep aid, and capable of treating chronic conditions like inflammation and anxiety. Little substantive information is given to justify the reason to purchase, but potential consumers are encouraged to go anywhere on the internet to find tens of thousands of anecdotal reports on the wonders of CBD oil.

These CBD products are pricey and ubiquitous, but are they legal? This question has been asked many times and this week the Ohio State Board of Pharmacy, which is one of the State’s bodies overseeing the implementation of the Ohio Medical Marijuana Program, provided clarity.

Cannabidiol oil is subject to the state’s medical marijuana law and regulations. These oils are derived from marijuana or hemp which is included in Ohio’s law definition of marijuana. These products can only be dispensed in a licensed Medical Marijuana Control Program dispensary, come from a known source in the program and be tested by laboratories licensed by the Ohio Department of Commerce.

Until dispensaries are operational, no one, including board licensees, may possess or sell CBD oil or other marijuana related products.

The intersection of state, federal and local marijuana laws are extraordinarily murky, but this information is important to share.

Take the time to let your communities know that these products are not currently legal in the state of Ohio and when they do become legal, one must have a recommendation from a physician to purchase only from an Ohio licensed dispensary. By writing letters to the editor, including in your newsletters or discussing in an open community forum, you will help clear the mystery around the legal status of these products.

Prevention Action Alliance
September 5, 2018


Beer Champion. . .

According to the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependency (NCADD), alcohol is the most commonly used addictive substance in the United States with 17.6 million people, or one in every 12 adults, who have an alcohol use disorder or an alcohol dependency.

Additionally, there are several million more who engage in risky, binge drinking patterns that could lead to alcohol related problems. Alcoholism is the third leading lifestyle-related cause of death in the nation.

This puts into context why we are remiss in sending congratulations to our respected U.S. Senators, four of whom were recently named “beer champion” by the Beer Institute—a national trade association.

The Senators were given this distinction for backing policies that offered tax relief for brewers and beer importers. Ohio’s craft beer production has grown to make the state the fifth largest craft brewing state in the nation, boasting 81,000 jobs for our economy.

But does this increase in economic development around a product that costs so much in terms of public health, loss of life and economic impact to communities merit the championship of favoring legislation to reduce taxes? We need more treatment facilities, more prevention dollars, and more recovery housing.

Take time to educate your legislators and congress on the importance of raising, not lower alcohol taxes to not only reduce underage drinking and over consumption, but to use those dollars to help address the addiction crisis in Ohio and the United States.

Prevention Action Alliance
September 11, 2018

Board of Pharmacy rules cannabis byproducts can’t be sold in Ohio stores

The Ohio Board of Pharmacy said, in a ruling posted on its website this week, that products that contain cannabidiol (CBD), a chemical found in cannabis plants, are not legal in Ohio (Source: “Ohio Pharmacy Board: No cannabis products can be sold in stores,” Canton Repository, Aug. 31, 2018).

On the shelves of stores throughout Ohio are whole hemp sections with products that contain CBD, such as hemp honey, CBD oils and skin creams. In Ohio, now that medical marijuana is legal, nothing extracted or clipped from a cannabis plant can be bought, sold or owned unless it comes from one of the 56 licensed dispensaries spread throughout the state.

All cannabis products also have to comply with other rules handed down by the legislation that legalized medical marijuana. That means any product derived from cannabis must have a “known source” and show the quantities of active ingredients. The products must also be tested by a state-approved lab.

Police Departments Are Testing a Weed Breathalyzer That Can Tell if You’re Stoned

The device could help law enforcement keep impaired drivers off the road.

A California-based startup is rolling out a super-sensitive breathalyzer that can tell if you’ve smoked weed in the past two hours. The goal? To help police keep impaired drivers off the road.

Teens who vape or use hookah are more likely to use marijuana later, study finds

Teens who used e-cigarettes and hookah were up to four times more likely to use marijuana later, according to a study published Monday in the journal Pediatrics.

Researchers from the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Southern California surveyed 2,668 students at 10 public high schools in Los Angeles beginning in fall 2013, when they were 14 years old and in ninth grade.
The students answered a paper-and-pencil, phone or internet survey that asked whether they had ever used (or had used in the past 30 days) e-cigarettes, combustible cigarettes or a hookah water pipe. They were also asked whether they had used any type of marijuana product. The use of less popular tobacco products such as smokeless tobacco and cigars was not studied.
In a follow up survey in fall 2015, when the students were 16 years old and in 11th grade, the survey asked whether they had used three types of marijuana products: combustible, vaped or edible.
The researchers found that the students who had tried e-cigarettes when they were freshmen had a more than three-fold greater likelihood of ever using marijuana and using marijuana in the past 30 days than students who hadn’t tried e-cigs.
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