More financial institutions working with marijuana industry
The total number of financial institutions willing to work directly with state-licensed cannabis business continues to grow, according to quarterly data provided by the U.S. Treasury Department and first reported by MarijuanaMoment.net.
Since the close of last year, the number of banks actively servicing marijuana businesses increased over 10 percent. The total number of credit unions servicing the industry rose by nearly 20 percent.
Federal law discourages banks and other financial institutions from maintaining relationships with marijuana businesses because the plant remains classified as a Schedule I controlled substance. In February, NORML submitted testimony to Congress in support of legislation to amend federal law in a manner that facilitates relations between the cannabis businesses and the banking industry.
Adults substitute cannabis for prescription meds: study
NEW YORK — Adults who purchase retail cannabis typically report using it to mitigate pain and to improve sleep, and often use it in place of conventional medications, according to data published in the Journal of Psychoactive Drugs.
A team of investigators from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York and the University of Miami assessed marijuana use trends among 1,000 adult use customers in Colorado. Seventy-four percent of those surveyed said that they consumed cannabis to promote sleep, while 65 percent reported using cannabis to alleviate pain. Among those respondents with a history of taking prescription sleep aids, 83 percent reported either reducing or ceasing their use of those medicines. Among those respondents with a history of consuming prescription opioids, 88 percent reported mitigating or stopping their use
“Our findings suggest that de facto medical use may be highly prevalent among adult use customers, and that access to an adult use cannabis market may influence individuals’ use of other medications,” authors concluded. “Our findings … suggest that adult use customers may be similar to medical cannabis patients in their use of cannabis as a substitute for prescription analgesics and sleep aids. … While adult use laws are frequently called ‘recreational,’ … our findings suggest that many customers use cannabis for symptom relief.”
Longitudinal studies assessing the use of prescription drugs following patients’ enrollment in state-sanctioned medical cannabis access programs frequently report a decline in the use of conventional medicines, specifically opioids, anti-anxiety drugs, and sleep aids.
Metered dosing of herbal cannabis effective in patients
HAIFA, Israel — Hospitalized patients administered cannabis via a metered dose inhaler report symptom relief and no severe adverse effects, according to clinical data published in the journal Palliative & Supportive Care.
Israeli investigators assessed the safety, feasibility, and efficacy of metered dose cannabis inhalation in a group of hospitalized patients. The device allowed for patients to self-administer precise quantities of cannabis in a vaporized (non-combustion) form.
All patients reported reduced pain symptoms following cannabis inhalation. Several subjects also reported relief from nausea and spasticity. No severe adverse effects were reported by any of the study’s participants. Three-quarters of the participants reported the inhaler to be “easy to use.”
Authors concluded, “[T]he current study results have demonstrated the feasibility of administrating cannabis using the Syqe Inhaler, allowing for the first time, to administer small, safe, accurate, precise, and reliable dosages of cannabinoids” in a hospital setting.
Del. lawmakers seek to reduce penalties for juveniles
DOVER, Del. — Lawmakers have advanced legislation amending criminal penalties for juveniles who violate the state’s marijuana possession laws. The bill now awaits action from Democratic Gov. John Carney.
Senate Bill 45 eliminates criminal penalties for low-level marijuana possession offenses (up to one ounce) for those under the age of 21. Instead, juvenile offenders will face a fine-only civil penalty. Those with past criminal convictions for juvenile offenses will be eligible for the mandatory expungement of their records.
Under current law, marijuana possession offenses are decriminalized for those ages 21 and older, but remains criminalized for those under the age of 18. Those between the ages of 18 and 21 may be eligible for civil sanctions, depending on their past criminal history.
If signed into law, the new measure will take immediate effect.
Cannabis Culture news in the Blade is provided in partnership with NORML. For more information, visit norml.org.