Medical marijuana has been the subject of a growing discussion because new research is pointing to certain positive results from a medical standpoint. Science is also become successful in producing a product that can provide medical benefits without the high, this product can be referred to as pharmaceutical marijuana. We must work to keep marijuana off the streets that could aide Ohio’s very serious drug epidemic.
Recently, some legislators launched a task force to explore the issue of medical and pharmaceutical marijuana. The task force will meet in order to learn more about the impact of lab made medical marijuana and improved technologies to provide a safe product for Ohioans. The task force is hoping to answer the question of how they can keep drugs off the streets while allowing those with serious diseases to benefit medically in a clinical setting.
As a result of legalizing medical marijuana, several states have witnessed an increase in drug use and crime because they failed to keep drugs off the streets. The discussion in the task force should focus on pharmaceutical products that are not smokeable and cannot cause a high. Pharmaceutical marijuana would be able to be filled like any other prescription at a local pharmacy. The key difference in this pharmaceutical marijuana is that instead of a patient smoking the marijuana plant, the cannabinoid compounds of the marijuana plant that provide medical benefits will be extracted in a lab and prescribed in an ingestible form.
Furthermore, unlike smokeable marijuana products, some pharmaceutical marijuana products have already been approved by the FDA to treat a number of illnesses. These alternative forms to smokeable marijuana can be made without THC, which is the component that causes a high. Without the “high,” these pharmaceutical marijuana products would not be marketable on the streets making them less prevalent than illegal marijuana products.
This task force is positive for Ohio as it provides a safe place to discuss the impacts medical marijuana will have on Ohioans. I will continue to oppose smokeable medical marijuana, but I remain positive on what can be learned about non-high inducing pharmaceutical marijuana.
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The writer represents the 84th District in the Ohio House of Representatives.