The Pennsylvania Department of Health is asking physicians to fill out a short survey if they're interested in participating the state's medical marijuana program. Find it here. Docs will be required to take a four-hour training course before they are able to write recommendations for cannabis oils, tinctures, and creams.
According to activists and industry wags, Pennsylvania is going out of its way to avoid the rollout snafu New York has suffered. The Empire State has had an active medical cannabis industry since January 2016. But potential patients have been flummoxed because not enough doctors registered to participate. Of nearly 95,000 docs in New York, only 800 have joined the program. And they aren't easily found. The state hasn't published their names.
Could CBD (cannabidiol) soon be approved as a medicine by the Food and Drug Administration?
Keith Humpreys, mental-health policy director at Stanford University, believes it's likely.
In the Washington Post, Humphreys writes that if the FDA deigns to approve it, the next step would hinge on the DEA removing CBD from Schedule I:
Would the DEA really consent to scheduling as a legitimate medicine an extract of a plant they have spent decades battling?
Based on a recent announcement in the Federal Register, the answer appears to be yes. The DEA is creating a separate classification for scheduling cannabis extracts, and specifically mentioned CBD as a potential example. The resulting legal framework would seem to allow CBD-derived medications to move to a less restrictive schedule while leaving marijuana on Schedule I.
Even if that were to happen, however, hurdles would remain for getting the medication into the hands of those who need it.
Stems and seeds
California legislators are looking to create a "sanctuary" for the marijuana industry and the people who use cannabis, reports Newsweek.
For complete cannabis coverage, go to philly.com/cannabis.