• Canadian Parents treat Epileptic Girl with Marijuana Oil

    May 12, 2015

    A two-year-old girl is being given oil-based medical marijuana to help control her seizures, the Canadian Press reported. Gwenevere Repetski, who will turn three years in June, is living in Thornhill, Ontario in Canada. Her father Alex Repetski has revealed that the marijuana oil has helped his daughter crawl, which is no less than a milestone for them, as they never thought of witnessing that sight.

    Gwenevere was an infant when she was diagnosed with epilepsy. The disease delayed her physical as well as emotional development. She could hardly roll over even at the age of two. After getting inputs from other sources, Alex decided to use marijuana oil, which is known as Cannabidiol, or CBD. When mixed with oil, it becomes a potential therapy for complex forms of epilepsy. And, the result was very positive.

    The oil has definitely helped the girl control her seizures and even crawl, which was next to impossible for her a few months ago. Although extracting oil from marijuana is illegal in Canada, the new law allows the development of medical marijuana industry. The law went into effect in March 2014. And, Alex did not waste time and found a doctor who authorized the use of medical marijuana for his daughter.

    As Gwenevere could not smoke or vaporize the pot, Alex made marijuana oil in his kitchen and started giving it to her three times a day. She never had a seizure after that, he claimed. Although it's still illegal to extract marijuana oil in the kitchen, Alex decided to go public with his story after consulting a criminal lawyer, who happens to be his friend. It is not sure whether the police would charge Alex, but if it happens, he is ready to fight the legal battle.

  • New Registry to keep track of Medical Cannabis Users

    May 12, 2015

    Two groups, including the research wing of the McGill University Health Centre in Montreal, have launched a Registry of Medical Cannabis users that aims at collecting information on how marijuana is used and whether it meets patient safety or not.

    The database is expected to provide ample opportunities to other researchers who seek information on symptoms and side affects of marijuana use.

    MCGill University claims that the medical marijuana registry is the first research database of its kind in the world. According to the data released by Health Canada, over 40,000 Canadians legally consume cannabis to relieve symptoms from diseases such as multiple sclerosis, HIV, cancer or epilepsy.

    Researchers at MCGill University believe that now it would be possible to paint a better picture of who is using cannabis, why they are doing so and to what extent they use it. The database will come in handy for the medical researchers who are willing to dig deeper into this. According to Health Canada, over 40,000 Canadians consume medical pots and 3,000 of them are living in Quebec where the registry has been created.

    Even if the registry will have a lot of useful details, the doctors must be trained on how to enter data and use them effectively. The registry won't have any identifiable patient information so that their privacy is protected. The registry will remain active for a minimum period of 10 years and involve thousands of patients.

  • Colorado approves Medical Marijuana in Classroom

    May 06, 2015

    The State Legislature in Colorado took a historic step by approving a bill, which would allow students at schools to have medical marijuana. The bill has now been sent to the Colorado Governor's desk. Supporters of the bill argued that medical marijuana should be treated at par with other medications and schools should be no exception.

    Schoolchildren living with conditions like epilepsy, cerebral palsy and seizures, take doses of low-THC medical marijuana. However, they are not allowed to take those in schools, which are drug-free zones. With the House approving the changes, it will be a big relief for the parents whose children may need medical marijuana at schools.

    Rep. Jonathan Singer (Democrat) sponsored the bill, known as "Jack's Amendment". The amendment was inspired by 14-year-old Colorado boy Jack Splitt, whose nurse was cautioned at school for putting a medical marijuana patch on his arm that was prescribed by doctors to help his spastic quadriplegic cerebral palsy and dystonia. They were asked not to return to school with the patch.

    The bill would allow parents or caregivers to come into schools and administer marijuana in the form of a patch. But, they must be armed with a doctor's note. Or else, they won't be allowed to administer medical marijuana. The bill would help the students to avoid the dilemma of not going to school whenever they need the drug for treatment.

    The Colorado House passed the legislation with overwhelming support. It was passed unanimously. Gov. John Hickenlooper, a Democrat, has 30 days to sign or reject the bill. Colorado would become the first State in the U.S.A. to allow medical marijuana in the classroom once the bill is signed. As per the reports, Governor John Hickenlooper has given his approval to the bill and would sign it soon.

  • "K2" Marijuana sends 12 People to Hospital in Willimantic

    May 06, 2015

    A synthetic marijuana, known as "K2" or "Spice" sent at least 12 people to hospital in Willimantic over the last two days. Cpl. Stanley Parizo Jr. from the Willimantic Police Department confirmed that they have been receiving calls about people exhibiting psychotic behavior after smoking the drug.

    People were reportedly seen running around without shirts and crying for help. The cops are trying to detect the source of the synthetic marijuana. They have already sent the samples for laboratory testing. These drugs may have been laced with the hallucinogen PCP, they believe.

    “Personnel that we have encountered who have ingested the tainted product have displayed psychotic behaviors requiring immediate hospitalization. We are cautioning those persons using this synthetic drug to beware of the very serious medical consequences that can be expected with the use of this product,”  said Corp. Stanley F. Parizo, Jr.,Willimantic Police Department public information officer.

    Symptoms of the psychotic behavior included increased blood pressure, increased heart rate, reports of hyperthermia and anxiety. There is little doubt that reports of adverse health effects associated with synthetic marijuana use have increased lately. Side effects of synthetic marijuana may cause extreme nervousness, anxiety, an increased heartbeat, tremors, vomiting, hallucinations and seizures.

    "The public should be aware of the potential dangers of synthetic marijuana use," said DPH Commissioner Dr. Jewel Mullen.
  • VA says No to Medical Marijuana for Military Veterans

    May 01, 2015

    The House of Representatives in Virginia (VA) has defeated a bipartisan amendment that would increase military veterans' access to medical marijuana. The amendment had a narrow defeat. It secured the support of 210 lawmakers, but 213 opposed it. Most Republicans opposed the bill, while majority of Democrats voted in its favor.

    A similar amendment had failed on the floor of the House last year too by a narrow margin. Tom Angell, chairman of Marijuana Majority, criticized the verdict, saying the House voted to continue a senseless rule that prevents doctors from treating military veterans with serious ailments using marijuana.

    As per the estimates and research papers, around 30 percent of military veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, suffer from PTSD and depression. As it is believed that marijuana may help cure anxiety, flashbacks and depression, which are part of PTSD symptoms, there has been a demand to allow military veterans to get full access to medical marijuana. However, majority of Republicans in VA are not relenting.

    In a letter this week urging lawmakers to pass the amendment, Dr. E. Deborah Gilman, a recently retired VA Physician, said it's "cruel to deny access to any medication for any patient," especially for veterans. But, his plea was not heard. The amendment was proposed by Reps. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.), Denny Heck (R-Nev.), Sam Farr (D-Calif.), Dana Rohrabacher (R-Calif.), Tom Reed (R-N.Y.), Dina Titus (D-Nev.), Gabbard (D-Hawaii), Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) and Ruben Gallego (D-Ariz.).

    Currently, 23 states in the U.S.A. have legalized marijuana for medical purposes and 13 others have legalized marijuana extracts for specific medical uses. However, pot still remains illegal under federal law.

  • New York accepting Medical Marijuana Applications

    April 30, 2015

    New York has begun accepting applications from businesses who are interested to manufacture and dispense medical marijuana in the state. It was announced by the state Department of Health. Once their applications are scrutinized and approved, they will be registered with the Department of Health. Deadline for filing the applications is May 29, 2015.

    The applicants will have to pay a fee of $10,000 towards non-refundable application fee. The registration fee will be $200,000. The final list of approved applicants will be announced in July 2015. Any queries related to the application procedure can be submitted by May 5 and would be answered by May 14. The $200,000 registration fee will be refunded to businesses that are not issued a registration.

    Only 5 applicants will be approved to cultivate and dispense medical marijuana in New York. They can have four dispensaries each. The dispensaries must be located in multiple counties across New York so that there is equitable distribution of medical marijuana on the basis of geographical presence. Diversity would be the key here and adjacent counties won't be allowed.

    Medical Marijuana advocates have been urging the State to speed up the process so that patients, especially sick children and elderly people can take advantage of the drug at the earliest. Even after the approval of applicants, the process may take long to lease potential buildings, equip them with relevant infrastructure and machinery and then start cultivating. Dispensing may take longer than expected.

    The medical marijuana bill was signed into law on July 7, 2015. The new law will only allow the drug in non-smokeable forms, including pills, oils and vapors.

  • Vancouver to become 1st City in Canada to regulate Marijuana Shops

    April 23, 2015

    In a major development, Vancouver is all set to become the first city in Canada to regulate marijuana shops, which means selling marijuana will be regulated and permitted with riders. The pot still remains illegal in Canada. It is available to people only by a mail order, prescription system set up by the federal government.

    The Vancouver City will now permit the operation of dispensaries under a new framework that would select the businesses to be permitted to open stores. The operating conditions would be made stringent to prevent any misuse or abuse. The proposed framework may take months to implement. It also needs the approval of the Council before taking effect.

    Although no regulated marijuana shops exist in Vancouver today, the officials have detected more than 80 unregulated, unlicensed and illegal marijuana shops and dispensaries in the city that have come up in the last two years. Only in the last four months, 20 new shops have opened in the city. A city Councillor said that efforts are being made to regulate an unregulated business without trying to get into any controversy.

    The officials argue that Vancouver will earn $30,000 annual administration fee per shop apart from the business license fee, which is around $5,000 per year. Each shop will have to renew every year, resulting in more revenue for the city. The bill has certain provisions such as allowing only individuals to own the shops and complete background check of the employees working at the shops. It will be made mandatory not to allow dispensaries within 300 meters of schools and community centers.