FDA approves first ever drug comprised of an active ingredient derived from marijuana

On June 25, 2018, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) made history by granting approval for the first drug comprised of an active ingredient derived from marijuana, to treat rare, severe forms of epilepsy.

This impact of this decision on the advancement of cannabinoid medicine cannot be understated. Currently, marijuana is listed as a Schedule 1 drug in the U.S., which is defined as drugs with no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse. Schedule 1 drugs currently include Heroine, LSD, Ecstasy and Marijuana, among others. The scheduling of marijuana in the U.S. has undoubtedly hindered research and development into cannabis as medicine and so the FDA's approval of Epidiolex - an oral solution made from cannabidiol (CBD) - could have a profound impact on the advancement and acceptance of cannabinoid medicine.

Read the FDA's full statement here.



Medical cannabis shouldn't be subject to tax: Ottawa Citizen

You’ve heard me talk about the cost burden of medical marijuana before; it’s an issue that’s very important to me as a doctor focused on patient and family-centred care.

When the federal government released its 2018 budget, it came as a surprise to many that it was planning to add a new excise tax on medical cannabis. Excise tax is usually reserved for products deemed to have a high social cost, such as tobacco or alcohol. However, a budget branded with the motto, “giving every Canadian a real and fair chance at success,” has seemed to overlook Canadian families already struggling with affordability and access to medical cannabis. 

In this article, Jenna Valleriani, does an excellent job exploring why medical cannabis, if authorized by a health-care provider for medical purposes, should be treated any different than most prescription medicines. 

If this issue is important to you, I encourage you to reach out to your local government representatives and make your voice heard. 

Yours in good health - Blake

Full article here.