The new grey market: As older users warm up to cannabis, pot companies want to learn more: Financial Post

Cannabis companies hoping to expand the medical market will have to overcome the conservatism towards cannabis amongst medical associations — both the Ontario Medical Association and the Canadian Medical Association support the dismantling of the medical cannabis regime altogether, arguing that with legalization, there remains no need for medical professionals to serve a “gatekeeper role.”

This kind of opposition, said Pearson, is what makes is so difficult to obtain funding to really understand how cannabis can improve the lives of seniors. “I treat seniors in a long-term care setting and I’m weaning down their use of anti-psychotics and opioids. To just say leave it up to themselves, that means you’re saying they should self-medicate, which is absurd.” Read full article here.

Surgeon General Believes It's High Time For Marijuana Reclassification: Forbes

At the close of 2018, the U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams made a bold move, and called on the federal government to rethink marijuana’s classification as a Schedule I substance. 

His belief– and that of researchers around the world– is that the current U.S. classification of marijuana inhibits research for medical advancements that include cannabis and cannabinoids.

This is long over-due and will have wide-reaching benefits for patients all over the world: "Reversing the excessively harsh and prohibitive laws for cannabis in the United States remains essential for making cannabis chemistry real human medicine." Read full article here.

Local opioid prescription rate too high, says Doctor Blake Pearson

By now, we all know that the opioid epidemic is widespread. Unfortunately, right here in my own small community, we still have one of the highest rates of opioid prescriptions in Ontario. In my new role as the Primary Care Lead, Addictions and Opioid Strategy, with the Erie St. Clair Local Health Integration Network, I am looking forward to collaborating closely with doctors, other health care professionals and experts across the region to develop a progressive strategy to make a real impact on the addiction problems afflicting our community. Read more here.

TTC subway operator barred while using medicinal cannabis: CBC

This is yet another example of the shocking, dangerous and unfortunately, not surprising, double-standard that exists between medical cannabis and traditional pharmaceuticals.

If organizations want to err on the side of caution for safety-sensitive positions until there is a more accurate way of testing cannabis impairment, than that seems sensible to me. What does not make sense, however, is forcing a TTC driver off of her medical cannabis to keep her job but allowing her to continue driving while taking impairing opioids, which she describes as leaving her feeling "groggy, forgetful and feeling like a zombie." Not to mention their high addiction potential.

Not only that, but this patient was prescribed CBD oil, which only contains trace amounts of THC and is considered non-impairing. Based on the evidence available, how can anyone believe that going back on opioids is a safer choice?

Read full article from the CBC here.

Research: Daily cannabis use could delay at-risk youth from moving to higher drug use, BC Centre on Substance Use (March 2018)

The Globe and Mail today reports that consuming cannabis every day could delay at-risk youth from moving on to injecting more dangerous drugs, according to a new study that casts doubt upon the age-old assumption that marijuana acts as a gateway for teens to try other more harmful substances.