White House removes Restrictions on Marijuana Research

Posted by Sagar Satapathy on June 23, 2015.

The White House has taken a historic step by allowing research into the medical properties of marijuana. It has removed the Public Health Service review requirement to facilitate research into the drug. Not only supporters, but also the opponents of marijuana had called for the removal of restrictions so that truth is not suppressed under the carpet.

Currently, marijuana research is not funded by the government. It will have to go through a rigorous process of Public Health Service review, which was established in 1999 by the federal government. The decision was taken after 1998 Institute of Medicine report called for more scientific research into the medical value of marijuana.

Under the Controlled Substances Act, the United States has five categories for drugs and drug ingredients. Marijuana has been classified as Schedule I, which includes drugs with highest potential for abuse and no medical value. Other substances such as Heroin and LSD also fall under Schedule I.

Marijuana has been under regulatory restrictions since 1999, making it difficult for the researchers to carry out their study. As the government termed it difficult to use safely, even in a medical capacity, the researchers wanted to research further on this substance to find out the truth and educate people of its positive effects too. Many studies tried to show marijuana's positive effects on certain conditions, but they were rejected outright.

While experts believe that the change in federal policy due to a flexible stand taken by the Obama Administration, which has actively supported scientific research on the safety and effectiveness of marijuana, some others believe that the shift is due to a change in political climate. As several states have legalized marijuana, the federal government has relaxed the norms although it has still banned both medical and recreational pot.

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