Many experts have advocated using medical marijuana to help solve America's opioid crisis. Medicinal cannabis can treat many of the same conditions as opioids, and also doesn't have any of the negative side effects of the harder drugs, such as addiction and overdoses. And now a congressman is throwing his support behind the efforts as well.
Democratic Congressman Earl Blumenauer spoke before the House Subcommittee on Health, which was holding hearings on how to end the opioid crisis. He distributed a pamphlet called the "Physician Guide to Cannabis-Assisted Opioid Reduction," which is a document created by a professor at Washington University in St. Louis School of Medicine that outlines 16 different studies that show medical marijuana can help reduce opioid consumption in America. He finished his testimony by asking Congress to pass a bill that would change the classification of marijuana as a Schedule I narcotic and allow it to be researched by scientists to find ways it can be used medicinally.
Blumenauer is a longtime advocate of medical marijuana rights in Congress. He co-sponsored the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer amendment that prohibited the federal government from intervening in states that legalized medical marijuana. Like the Rohrabacher-Blumenauer amendment, his current bill to increase research of medical marijuana is also supported by members of both political parties.
If you'd like to read the full version of the "Physician Guide to Cannabis-Assisted Opioid Reduction," the Cannabist has the full version available right here.
And if you'd like to see Rep. Blumenauer's testimony to the House committee, you can see it right here: