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Top 6 Medical Uses Of Marijuana

Medical marijuana has been legalized in several states in the United States as well as some countries across the world. If used properly, this substance can be very beneficial to people that are suffering from various medical issues. It is mostly recommended for relieving chronic pain as well as increasing appetite in chemotherapy patients that are struggling with nausea. This substance can be used to treat medical conditions that occur most often as well as illnesses that may have serious life threatening effects.

Glaucoma, which is a disease that causes pressure in the eyeball to increase, can be treated using medical marijuana. If you do not treat this condition early enough, it may damage the optic nerve, something which in turn may result into loss of vision. According to a study that was carried out by the National Eye Institute way back in the early 70s, it showed that when this substance is smoked, it caused the intraocular pressure in people that have glaucoma as well as those that have normal pressure to be lowered. Its effects may slow down the progression of glaucoma, something which will in turn prevent blindness.

Medical marijuana is also quite helpful when it comes to controlling epileptic seizures. According to a study that was conducted in Virginia University in 2003, this substance was found to rid rats of seizures for approximately ten hours. THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, which is the active in ingredient in this substance, controls the seizures by binding to the brain cells that regulate relaxation and control excitability in people. It is however important to look for a doctor’s advice before using it to treat this condition to avoid any harmful side-effects.

Another important medical use of marijuana is preventing spread of cancer in patients that are suffering from this condition. A study that was carried out by researchers at California Pacific Medical Center that is based in San Fransisco found that a chemical compound known as cannabidiol stops the spread of cancer when induced into the system. It does this by turning off a gene called d-1 which is replicated more by cancer cells as opposed to the non-cancerous cells. It stops them from spreading throughout the body of the patient.

If you always experience panic attacks or anxiety disorders, using medical marijuana can help you decrease the effects of that condition. Its users have claimed that it helps them to suppress nausea as well as relieve pain. There are the two main reasons why this substance is popularly used for relieving the side effects that are usually associated with chemotherapy. In a study that was conducted in Havard Medical School in 2010, it was found that medical marijuana can act as a sedative when taken in low doses. It was also found to improve the smoker’s mood. You should however be careful against taking it in large doses since that may make you paranoid or increase the anxiety levels.

Medical marijuana has also been found to ease the pain caused by Multiple Sclerosis. In a study that was conducted on 30 patients that had this condition by Jody Corey-Bloom, it was found that the patients were in less pain for a number of days after they smoked this substance. Before that, they had failed to respond to other treatments that were administered to them. THC, which is the active ingredient in medical marijuana binds to the receptors in muscles and nerves to ease pain. Results from another study showed that this substance is also effective when it comes to controlling muscle spasms.

People who suffer from Alzheimer’s disease will also benefit a great deal by taking medical marijuana. A study that was conducted by professionals from Scripps Research Institute showed that this substance can slow down the progression of this disease. The active ingredient in Marijuana, THC, slows down the formation of amyloid by blocking the enzyme that is responsible for making plaques in the brain. It is these plaques that kill brain cells, something which in turn causes Alzheimer’s disease.

These are just but some of the medical uses of marijuana. It still has many other benefits, for instance treating inflammatory bowel diseases, treating hepatitis C as well as relieving discomfort that is caused by arthritis. Just make sure that you take it in right quantities as prescribed by your doctor if you want to benefit from it.

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How To Start A Medical Marijuana Dispensary

With the legalization of medical marijuana in some states in the United States as well as some countries across the world, putting up a medical marijuana dispensary may be one of the prospective businesses that you may want to get into. Marijuana can be used as an alternative medicine for patients that have conditions that it can treat with recommendation from a qualified medical doctor. Unfortunately, the laws of opening a medical marijuana dispensary in most of these states are very complex. You need to make sure that you use the right procedure before setting up this business, otherwise you may end up getting yourself into problems.

The first step you will need to take before starting a medical marijuana dispensary is to seek advice from a doctor who is knowledgeable in this area. Let the lawyer explain to you about the procedures involved in opening such establishments as well as how to go about them correctly. It is important to understand that even though many states have made the usage of this substance legal, the federal law does not allow it. Its possession, cultivation as well as transportation are illegal under the United States Controlled Substance Act regardless if it is done in compliance to the laws of the state you are from. Lawyers know more about these rules, so they will help you get clear information before getting into this business.

Another thing you will need to do when starting a medical marijuana dispensary is to look for a suitable place for it. There might be certain areas in your state that do not allow such businesses, so it is better to know about them before putting up your dispensary. It will be easier for you to know which places in your region allow setting up a business like these and those that do not if you ask your municipal office. This will help you avoid problems later on. You also need to make sure that the dispensary is located at a strategic point where people can access it easily. Such places include outside churches, schools, parks and residential areas.

It also necessary to obtain the proper permits for starting this business from the state before you put it up. Among the permits you will need to obtain is the seller’s permit. This is because medical marijuana is subject to sales tax. Some states, cities and counties may require additional permits before you start this business, so you will need to know about them prior to setting up the business. Some of these permits include the zoning permit and/or the business license.

Just like any other investment vehicle, you will need to have capital to start a medical marijuana dispensary. You will need to check your bank account and determine if you can afford the necessary amount required for starting the dispensary. If you do not have enough money, you will need to look for other genuine ways that you can get to complete your project. You can borrow from friends or borrow a loan if you are eligible for it.

You will also need to make sure that the medical marijuana dispensary that you are putting up is integrated and friendly to the community that you are part of if you want it to be successful. You will need to make sure that the facility does not have signs or symbols that may attract parents’ attention or law enforcement. It is also important to keep the facility clean all the time and discourage unwanted solicitors. It will also be a good idea to hire security personnel to ensure security of your customers.

Just like it is the case with any other business, you will need to make sure that you always maintain a positive relationship with your customers if you want to be successful. You will need to have the right business language and treat your customers with courtesy and respect always. Besides the customers, you will also need to maintain a positive relationship with government officials and law enforcement officers, otherwise you might end up getting yourself in trouble all the time.

You also need to be aware of the local rules as well as regulations for operating a medical marijuana dispensary depending on the state that you are from. Such regulations include how close the dispensaries can be, how many can be permitted in that state, how quickly licenses are granted, how many licenses are granted as well as the hours of operation. You also need to know the amount of medical marijuana that is allowed for possession as well as the security procedures involved in handling this substance.

If you fail to run you medical marijuana dispensary in accordance with your state laws, you or your employees may end up being exposed to state criminal liability. You will need to know the state laws that govern possession, distribution as well as cultivation of this substance if you do not want to find yourself in trouble with the law. Getting help from a qualified lawyer will help you understand these laws clearly and easily. Penalties or failure to adhere to them may result into fines, substantial jail time or seizure of property.

You will also need to make sure that you are always up to date with the medical marijuana laws since they keep changing constantly. Consulting an attorney who is well informed in this field will help you avoid or minimize risks associated with breaking the laws associated with improper possession or consumption of this substance. You should consult the attorney before, during, as well as after opening the medical marijuana dispensary if you want every operation to flow smoothly.

If you are thinking of opening a medical marijuana dispensary, it will also be great to consider a consultation clinic since the two always operate hand in hand. There is no way that you are going to give patients medical marijuana without a written documentation and recommendation from a licensed doctor. This will make sure that they are well informed about their condition. It is also important for patients to have a medical marijuana identification card.

US States That Allows the Use of Medical Cannabis

Whether medical cannabis has to be legalized or not is a hot debate in many states in America. Since the medicinal properties of this drug were discovered, there are some states that allowed it to be used for treating conditions such as vomiting, nausea, lack of appetite, pain, Lou Gehrig’s, Alzheimer’s, Crohn’s, Hepatitis, Glaucoma, cancer, HIV/AIDS, and other chronic illnesses. The states include Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Washington DC, Washington state, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Vermont, Oregon, Rhode Island, Maine and Michigan. These states have legally allowed the use of medical cannabis for health concerns. But a patient can only use it if he or she has got prescription within a certain legal framework.

Among the states that have allowed the use of medical cannabis, six of them allow dispensaries to sell the drug to patients that have conditions that it can treat. The six states include California, Rhode Island, New Mexico, Montana, Maine and Colorado. In the state of Maryland, medical cannabis is not legally allowed but if a person has proof that they have a medical condition that the drug can help cure, they are allowed to use it.

There are various medicinal uses that medical cannabis can help cure as we have already mentioned above. It is administered into the body in many forms which include liquid marinol, pill form or in vaporized form. It can also be cooked into food or smoked. When a patient considers taking it while cooked into foods, some of the foods that he or she can cook with it in them include banana bread, many baked goods, brownies as well as cookies. You can ingest medical cannabis into any tasty product if you do not prefer taking it directly.

So how are you supposed to obtain medical cannabis if you are a patient suffering from an illness that you think it can cure? First, you will need to obtain a written prescription from a medical doctor. You must also become a M.M cardholder. On the internet, you will find a lot of websites that have got links to clinics as well as healthcare practitioners that are advocates of medical cannabis. In some places in some states that have legalized this drug, you will find storefront operations that work as dispensaries, for instance in California along the boardwalk of Venice Beach.

Another way that you can obtain medical cannabis is by growing your own plants. You will need to have an M.M card in order to have legal permission to have your own garden of medical cannabis. It is however important to do research at state level and find out the laws regarding the possession and use of this substance. It might be unclear with every state having different restrictions when it comes to growing, selling as well as possessing medical cannabis – no wonder there are clashes between states and the federal governments when it comes to what is legal and what is not in the medical cannabis business.

Illinois Department of Health Reveals Regulations for Medical Cannabis Patients

On January 21, 2014, the Department of Health for Illinois released a draft of their medical cannabis regulations for public comment before submitting them to the state.  The draft demonstrates how the system would work for patients and their caregivers.  Some of the personal highlights and overall important facets of the regulations are:

1) Potential patients with a drug felony will be unable to obtain a medical marijuana card.  However, if that person has a felony from obtaining marijuana for medical purposes, they may be offered some leeway under the proposed law.

2) Patients would pay $150 a year to apply for a medical marijuana registry identification card plus the cost of Live-scan electronic, inkless fingerprinting.  Qualified patients’ caregivers cost would be $125 a year. Patients with Social security benefits would pay the amount of $75 a year.

3) Doctors must have an ongoing “bona fide physician-patient relationship” instead of simply prescribing medical cannabis.

4) Anyone with a gun permit or concealed weapons permit would be prevented from getting a medical cannabis card.

5) There are currently 30 conditions mentioned in the guidelines including cancer, muscular dystrophy, Tourette’s and lupus.  The Governor of Illinois will appoint a nine member “Medical Cannabis Advisory Board” consisting of eight health care practitioners and one medical cannabis patient.  One of the board’s main functions is to review petitions for adding debilitating medical conditions or diseases to the state’s list.

6) The guidelines also clearly state   who can possess or use cannabis and the locations where it would be available i.e. a school bus driver, an on duty law enforcement officer,  or on prison grounds.

7)  Medical cannabis patients will be unable to smoke cannabis where smoking is prohibited by law.

The full 48 page copy of the regulations are available here: http://www2.illinois.gov/gov/mcpp/Documents/DPH%20medical%20cannabis_DRAFT%20proposed%20rule%2001%2021%2014.pdf

I feel that any state that implements a law regarding medical cannabis patients’ rights is on the right track.  Illinois entering this four year pilot program with a transparent, regulated system allowing patients to safe access is a giant step in the right direction.  More states will invariably follow suit and soon we hope to see a legalized nation.

Florida to have medical cannabis initiative on November Ballot

Florida Residents will be the next group to vote on a medical cannabis initiative this upcoming November. The state’s medical cannabis initiative was led and funded by Orlando attorney John Morgan. His group, “United for Care” has collected approximately 1.1 million signatures, much more than the required 700,000 signatures.  The signatures have since been certified by the Florida Division of Elections to qualify to be on the ballot.

The language of the ballot initiative had to be approved by Florida’s Supreme Court as State Attorney General Pam Bondi challenged the language claiming it was misleading.  However, on January 27th, just three days after the required amount of signatures was reached, the Court approved the initiative in a 4-3 vote.

Florida would become the first state in the South to have a medical cannabis law on its books.  It could also be one of the largest markets for medical cannabis as Florida has the 4th largest population in the United States.  Public Policy Polling found that 65% of the population of Florida supports the legalization of medical cannabis. This growing trend reflects 50% more support even by registered Republicans.

Sadly, Florida’s Governor, Republican Rick Scott, strongly opposes legalizing medical cannabis. His opponent, however, former Florida Governor Charlie Christ who is planning to run in the upcoming election against Rick Scott is an avid supporter of this initiative. We look forward to the governor’s race and urge Floridians to get out the vote to make Florida a state that serves its patients who require medical cannabis.

PATH Consulting’s response to Obama’s discussing cannabis legalization with David Remnick for the New Yorker

On Sunday, January 19th, social media began to buzz as President Barack Obama discussed cannabis legalization with David Remnick for the New Yorker.

http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2014/01/27/140127fa_fact_remnick

“As has been well documented, I smoked pot as a kid, and I view it as a bad habit and a vice, not very different from the cigarettes that I smoked as a young person up through a big chunk of my adult life. I don’t think it is more dangerous than alcohol,” said Obama in the interview. “We should not be locking up kids or individual users for long stretches of jail time when some of the folks who are writing those laws have probably done the same thing.”

As this language was a dramatic departure from the actions of the federal government in the past, it drew many incredulous comments. Hadn’t we been promised similar things in the past, only to have them never materialize? The Obama administration has shut down more dispensaries than his three predecessors combined. What about his US Attorneys, the over-zealous DEA, and other law enforcement agencies?

PATH Consulting’s Managing Director legal expert James Anthony has a somewhat more hopeful take on Obama’s statement. “No president since Jimmy Carter has taken as explicitly a non-negative verging on pro-legalization position. As for the DOJ and the DEA, supposedly they work for him. We’ll see. But we are, finally, in the midst of something different enough that real change is possible. Mid-second term Obama was always our best opportunity. There was never any real reason to hope for change in his first term, it was just a long shot. Now everything bends towards legalization. He’ll do what he can. And if we don’t blow it, we could be all the way there in the next 8-10 years nationwide.”

If Anthony is right, the next two years will be a very exciting time for cannabis legalization. If Obama’s very public statements truly mark a sea change in national policy, we are about to usher in a new era of legal—or at least tolerated—state regulated cannabis economic activity.