Remember the Past In the Future Perfect Tense
Why shouldn’t medical establishments be able to participate in the great Green Gold Rush?
Medical marijuana will soon be legally distributed in Illinois, and officials at Swedish Covenant Hospital on Chicago’s North Side say their pharmacy deserves to be among the dispensaries.
They say marijuana could benefit patients with cancer and other serious maladies, and that hospital pharmacists already dispense drugs that that are much more potentially dangerous than cannabis.
One problem, though: Pot, medical or otherwise, remains illegal under federal law, and any hospital that fills marijuana prescriptions risks its Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement.
So for now, Swedish Covenant officials say they can only try to influence the conversation about the distribution of medical marijuana, pointing out what they see as the illogical exclusion of hospital personnel.
“As long as there’s no change to the federal law, we couldn’t jeopardize services by becoming a dispensary … but we’re not afraid of making the noise,” said Marcia Jimenez, hospital director of intergovernmental affairs.
Hospitals around the country have grappled with this conundrum as more states pass medical marijuana laws. Twenty-three states plus the District of Columbia permit medical use of the drug, but Chris Lindsey of the Marijuana Policy Project said he is unaware of any hospital pharmacy that dispenses marijuana.
He said Maryland officials at first required medical marijuana to be distributed through hospitals, but dropped the idea when none would do it.
Marijuana’s continuing illegality under federal law, Lindsey said, “places large organizations such as hospitals in a very risky position, which could lead to criminal charges for officers, doctors or investors, and possible asset forfeiture for hospital property. There is too much on the line for hospitals to go there.”
(click here to continue reading Swedish Covenant wants to dispense medical pot – chicagotribune.com.)
And the federal government really needs to update their policy to reflect the will of the American citizen. Cannabis remains a Schedule 1 drug, meaning the government considers it worse than cocaine, opioids, methamphetamine, and other powerful inebriants. Nonsensical.
From Wikipedia, the definition of Schedule 1 drugs includes these:
The drug or other substance has a high potential for abuse.
The drug or other substance has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States.
There is a lack of accepted safety for use of the drug or other substance under medical supervision.
(click here to continue reading List of Schedule I drugs (US) – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.)
Yeah, cannabis doesn’t really fit this definition now, does it? High potential for abuse? Uhh, no, not really. No medical use in treatment? Uh, except in states which are collectively 75% of the US population. The third point is the biggest laugh of all: how many people have died from too much consumption of marijuana? Zero. Unless you die from a bale of marijuana falling on you, or you get in a knife fight with a drunk…