Ottawa Approves Medicinal Use of Marijuana

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Ottawa Citizen

OTTAWA (CP) - Canada will become the only country in the world with a government-regulated system for using marijuana as medicine, under provisions unveiled Friday. The marijuana access program is being justified partly on compassionate grounds and partly as a scientific research effort, and is attracting little criticism even from social conservatives.

Every patient wishing to use medical pot would have to either grow it or designate another person to grow it for him or her. A designated grower would not be allowed to supply more than three patients.

-- Rachel Gibson (rgibson@hotmail.com), April 07, 2001

Answers

Move over Rachel. They got room for
spiders up there :::;-

-- spider (spider0@usa.net), April 07, 2001.

heh heh We're really quite excited about it. Something like 220 people had already been given gov permission to use it starting a couple of years ago, but of course their next problem was that they could neither grow nor acquire it legally. Finally, in a recent case, a judge literally forced the fed gov to come up with a different plan. The result is this one, which covers a broad range of ailments from cancer, MS, AIDS, epilepsy, arthritis, etc. through to possibilities for all sorts of research. It also gives the "patient" some degree of control over his/her own illness.

I personally expect the number of people using this route to increase multifold in the next few years and, yes, we may indeed acquire a few new citizens along the way. :)

-- Rachel Gibson (rgibson@hotmail.com), April 07, 2001.


PS Watch out for the gardeners, who welcome spiders in dry weather only.

Ottawa Citizen

Arthritis Society lauds new drug rules

Juliet O'Neill The Ottawa Citizen

The head of the Arthritis Society has welcomed the government's "bold" inclusion of severe arthritis in the list of painful illnesses for which marijuana can be legally smoked under proposed new regulations made public yesterday.

However, Denis Morrice also noted that many Canadians with arthritis would not want to smoke marijuana for pain relief and he urged the government to speed approval of a prescription drug, Remicade, that would treat the disease, not just the symptoms.

The drug, aimed at inhibiting the progression of joint damage in rheumatoid arthritis, has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and other industrialized countries but has been bogged down in the approval system in Canada for about two years, he said.

"That's just not fair," he said. "That's what we're after, treating the disease."

About four million Canadians suffer arthritis and there are about 100 forms of the disease. He had no idea how many people might be attracted to marijuana. "It's one more drug that's in the hands of a doctor to treat their patients," he said.

While the government has provided 220 people so far with "compassionate exemptions" from the law against marijuana, the regulations codify the conditions under which permission could be granted, spell out a licence system and identify the medical conditions and symptoms required for eligibility.

The regulations were welcomed by health critics of three of the four opposition parties, all of which support what Health Minister Allan Rock calls a compassionate approach.

The exception was the Bloc Quebecois, which accuses the government of taking a bureaucratic approach and advocates simply legalizing possession of up to 30 grams of marijuana for medical purposes for anyone with a doctor's approval.

(snip)

Pharmacists won't be involved initially, but background papers about the regulations say they "could eventually play a key role in the distribution of marijuana products as they do today for pharmaceutical drugs."

-- Rachel Gibson (rgibson@hotmail.com), April 07, 2001.


It won't be long before THC is available in a pill form.

-- John littmann (LITTMANNJOHNTL@AOL.COM), April 08, 2001.

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