Massachusetts DOPH published an in depth report about medical marijuana patients. The findings and information in the report are useful for petitioning new qualifying conditions and educating physicians. Similar to the Minnesota DOH reports.
REPORT Report Massachusetts Department of Public Health Marijuana Research
ORGANIZATION: Department of Public Health DATE PUBLISHED: July 9, 2019 The Marijuana Baseline Health Study (MBHS)
A legislative mandate required the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) to conduct a baseline study to investigate three topics:
Patterns of use, methods of consumption, and general perceptions of marijuana Incidents of impaired driving and hospitalization related to marijuana use; and Economic and fiscal impacts for state and local governments This study, referred to as the Marijuana Baseline Health Study (MBHS), was conducted by DPH, under the leadership of the DPH Commissioner, in consultation with the Executive Office of Health and Human Services, the Executive Office for Administration and Finance, and the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security.
Open PDF file, 5.37 MB, forMarijuana Based Health Study Final Report (PDF 5.37 MB) Open DOCX file, 4.29 MB, forMarijuana Based Health Study Final Report (Accessible Version) (DOCX 4.29 MB)
Good quotes can be found within the report:
By Michael Komorn
Pregnancy and Medical Marijuana
Expectant mothers are searching for answers about the safety profile of Medical Marijuana. Unfortunately the scientific community has dropped the ball and kicked it off the cliff on this issue. The lack of scientific research is due to marijuana’s illegality. Further, there exist huge biases within the published research. Mostly the research confounds marijuana use with tobacco and/or alcohol, two known causes of fetus and child harm. Separating out marijuana effects from the self-reported research on mothers who also smoke tobacco and drink alcohol is impossible. Likewise no pregnant women are signing up for research studies due to the illegality of marijuana and CPS removing children from mothers for testing positive for marijuana use.
Many organizations quote from other organizations, who quote from other studies and reviews. The Minnesota Department of Health OFFICE OF MEDICAL CANNABIS quotes from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists Committee report:
In the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists official committee opinion, interim update Oct 2017, the committee found:
Uninformed opinion, with zero evidence and lots of fear, uncertainty and doubt (FUD) are used to scare mothers away from a nontoxic plant. These uninformed unscientific opinions are being used by lawmakers to craft laws continuing the cycle of FUD and the illegality of marijuana. “Oh we don’t know what marijuana does, so let’s treat it like heroin” and “if anyone questions our opinion of marijuana, we’ll call them dirty lazy pothead stoner hippies” or “puppets of the marijuana industry”.
But we do know what marijuana does. One cannot live in a bubble and ignore reality and the world around us. Women smoke and eat marijuana while pregnant.
Cannabis use during pregnancy in France in 2010
Trends in Self-reported and Biochemically Tested Marijuana Use Among Pregnant Females in California From 2009-2016
Much of the opinions on marijuana are tainted by a small number of poorly designed studies on marijuana. For example, the National Institute of Health gives grants to researchers through NIDA, the National Institute of Drug Abuse, to study marijuana. NIDA’s focus is on drug abuse, so 90% of its grants are for studies on marijuana abuse, not marijuana benefits. When you ignore half of your research, you ignore science. Many of these studies are completed in order to get future grants from NIDA; research is often conducted from the conclusion backwards in order to show some kind of harm from marijuana use. This, in of itself, does not bias research.
The bias is introduced when researchers are rushed and forced to publish results, even if the studies were deficient. For example, every website and newspaper ran with the story about marijuana using children lose IQ points. Not many reported on the follow-up study that could not replicate the first study. When eliminating co-founders, the new study found no drop in IQ points. Further, research on twin siblings showed that the drop in IQ was due to parenting, binge drinking or other societal influences, not marijuana.
Try reading that last sentence again. In a world of science, evidence, reasoning and logic, a doctor makes a statement that decades of use of marijuana might make you lose intellectual function, based on conjecture.
NIDA also continues to perpetuate the myth that Marijuana is a “gateway drug”.
These findings are consistent with the idea of marijuana as a "gateway drug." However, the majority of people who use marijuana do not go on to use other, "harder" substances.
NIDA, NIH, FDA, DEA, including other federal, state, and local government organizations and private companies continue to perpetuate these and other lies in order to keep marijuana illegal. ASA has filed complaints against the DEA multiple times to get it to remove incorrect statements about marijuana off of the DEA’s website.
A cyclical pattern emerges from the current and past situation surrounding marijuana.
1. Stymied scientific research, due to illegality of marijuana and government funding biases
2. Using stymied scientific research as a reason to ignore reality.
3. Repeating the biased scientific research, long after it was shown to be deficient.
4. Using the deficient biased research in “meta-reviews”. Thus taking bad science as a base to create more bad science just by doing an analysis of the bad science conclusions.
5. Even after a research study has been fully proven to be deficient and conflicting with better research, continue to hold it up as if it is still valid in some way.
6. Publish opinions as if they were facts, without any data to back up any claims.
Continue reading for more conflicting studies and more calls for research.
Marijuana: Prenatal and Postnatal Exposure in the Human
Marijuana use in pregnancy and lactation: a review of the evidence
Marijuana and Pregnancy
The Association of Marijuana Use with Outcome of Pregnancy
Prenatal Tobacco, Marijuana, Stimulant, and Opiate Exposure: Outcomes and Practice Implications
Many of these studies contradict themselves. Some report differences in birth weight, some show no differences. Read the studies yourself!
House bill 5422 will force MMFLA provisioning centers to give patients and caregivers an unscientific pamphlet, as described by the legislature.
HB 5222 looks like it will pass. All this fear and doubt of a non-toxic 5,000+ year old medication used by millions of humans in every country in the world.
The most comprehensive marijuana driving research from all over the world says.... marijuana drivers drive slower to compensate for being high.By Michael Komorn
Marijuana makes drivers drive slower.
That's about it.
Read on to see the consensus from research spanning 50 years from USA, UK, Canada, Australia, and everywhere else. Just under 300 studies along with independent and government reports were collected, yet the research keeps pointing to the same thing. People driving after using cannabis drive a little bit slower. States with Legalized and Medical Marijuana have fewer fatal car accidents. My guess is that the fewer fatal accidents are due to substituting alcohol and other medications for cannabis.
Don't believe me, take the official government word directly from NIDA:
NHTSA 2017 Marijuana-Impaired Driving A Report to Congress
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration did its own tests in 2015 and found that THC showed no increased crash risk.
Crash Fatality Rates After Recreational Marijuana Legalization in Washington and Colorado.
CANNABIS USE AND DRIVING: Evidence Review Canadian Drug Policy Coalition (CDPC) Simon Fraser University
NHTSA The Incidence and Role of Drugs in Fatally Injured Drivers 1992
NHTSA Marijuana and Actual Driving Performance 1993
CRASH CHARACTERISTICS AND INJURIES OF VICTIMS IMPAIRED BY ALCOHOL VERSUS ILLICIT DRUGS University of Michigan Study 1997
CANNABIS: OUR POSITION FOR A CANADIAN PUBLIC POLICY REPORT OF THE SENATE SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON ILLEGAL DRUGS 2002
Psychomotor Performance, Subjective and Physiological Effects and Whole Blood D9 -Tetrahydrocannabinol Concentrations in Heavy, Chronic Cannabis Smokers Following Acute Smoked Cannabis
Medical Marijuana Laws, Traffic Fatalities, and Alcohol Consumption
See the full list of studies here:
By Michael Komorn
"Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul
And sings the tune without the words
And never stops at all."
― Emily Dickinson
"You cannot swim for new horizons until you have courage to lose sight of the shore."
― William Faulkner
"We dream to give ourselves hope. To stop dreaming - well, that's like saying you can never change your fate."
― Amy Tan, The Hundred Secret Senses
Hope keeps us going; hope is important. It is remaining in the game, believing that things will be OK, and not giving up.
It is getting to the end of the road, having nowhere to go, and instead of quitting, continuing to fight to figure it out, to stay present and mindful, and not give up.
Hope is important. Without hope people have nothing.
A new, thoroughly researched petition to add autism to the list of conditions which can be treated with medical marijuana will be heard by the Michigan Medical Marihuana Review Panel on July 20, 2015 at 9:30 am at 611 W. Ottawa in Lansing. LARA originally refused to hear the new petition, citing the denial of two previously submitted petitions for autism. The previously submitted petitions provided limited science and research in support, and resulted in a "no" vote. This new petition was accompanied by over 75 peer review articles and over 800 pages of research on the issue of cannabis as a viable option for the treatment of autism.
Despite what can only be described as overwhelming evidence, LARA, the agency tasked with addressing petitions for new conditions, refused to hold a hearing or even consider the petition. This "dead-end" and unjust position seemingly demanded that myself and Attorney Tim Knowlton, the Michigan Medical Marijuana Association, and Cannabis Patients United sue LARA in the Ingham County Court. It was only after nearly a year of litigation and foot dragging that LARA ceded its position. Attorney General Bill Schuette's office "defended" LARA's position by delaying for months, only yielding after the petitioner filed her brief with the court, days before oral arguments.
Unfortunately it seems the lives of children and parents hang in the balance of a possibly disinterested and dysfunctional process controlled by LARA.
But now that we are here, and now that there is a debate, the science is overwhelming. Let's not get caught up or distracted from the real issue: autism is a terrible disease with no cure and no proven safe treatments and this is a problem. We could lie to ourselves and say that no evidence exists documenting the effects of cannabis as medicine, but we know this is not true. Testimony was given by parents and physicians, and 75 scientific studies documenting cannabis safety and efficacy in treating autism have now been provided to the panel for their consideration in this decision. We also learned that telling a parent that there is no hope for their child does not work. The most compelling testimony during the May 27 public hearing was that, independent of how the new condition panels decides, parents dealing with this affliction will continue to do what they think is best for their child. This begs the question: shouldn't these parents not have to worry about being arrested considering everything else they have to deal with?
For pediatric and juvenile patients under the age of 18, two doctors would have to approve.
The growing rate of autism has just recently being identified as a significant public health issue, due to statistic provided by the Center for Disease Control's Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network, a nationwide federal program to identify, estimate, and track and compare autism rates around the country.
Their estimates show an alarming trend: autism rates have risen in every report since tracking began in 2002, from 1 in 150 in 2002 to 1 in 68 in 2010.
In years past, I said people who opposed the medical use of cannabis have never experienced a friend, family member, or person who was suffering from a medical condition. But to oppose the treatment of autism for patients afflicted with the disease is inhumane. To let the status quo remain and subject parents and the physicians who treat these children with exposure to arrest and criminal charges is a deplorable policy for the benefit and welfare of the public health for the citizens of Michigan. There is overwhelming scientific and medical evidence supporting the approval of the petition. There is probably more research supporting the use of cannabis as a treatment for autism than all of the research to support the other ten conditions currently on the registry.
It is important to be mindful of an often overlooked aspect of the MMMA: that its purpose is to protect the serious ill persons who have been recommended to use cannabis with a doctor's (in this case two doctors) recommendation and a bona fide relationship, from arrest and prosecution.
There should be no debate that those afflicted with autism are seriously ill, and the purpose of our law, and the compassion shown by Michigan voters in approval, was to protect parents, patients, and physicians. For the panel to not recommend that autism be approved as a condition of the program is to ignore their duty and responsibility.
Additionally they should be mindful that the standard by which they are held, to a recommend or not recommend as outlined by LARA's own administrative rules, already requires that the condition in question be a debilitating condition:
All too often the issues regarding medical marihuana and marihuana in general are politicized. Even at times using the propagandist's favorite imagery of protecting the children. Well this issue is really about the children, and the only thing that should be considered is that there is overwhelming evidence that cannabis can provide a safe alternative to the traditional medications and treatments currently used for those afflicted with cannabis, and parents and doctors live in fear of criminal liability.
But more importantly, think about any parent that is at the end of the road with traditional treatments, when the physician has no alternative and there is absolutely no likelihood of anything changing for their child, wouldn't we want that parent to have these choices, and who are we to say otherwise?
What would a parent do for their child? is really the question. It the answer is anything, as the testimony presented to the panel indicates, then it is clear parents will continue to treat their children; they will not stop. If it works for their children, the question is, do we want the parents arrested?
It is called hope and every red blooded American is entitled to have it.
Hope is needed here. Protect the children, do not let them or their parents get arrested for treating autism with cannabis.