We often hear that marijuana can be an effective alternative to dangerous opioids, and once again another study is proving that could be the case.

A professor at the University of Georgia and his colleagues did a major investigation into whether marijuana use can lead to less opioid abuse, and the answer is yes. They looked at Medicare data over several years and found that states with access to medical marijuana had a 14 percent reduction in opioid prescriptions compared to non-medical marijuana states. They also believe that states with medical marijuana programs are also dispensing about 1.8 million fewer prescription opioid pills than they would've without those programs. (To put that in perspective, Medicare estimates that Americans receive 23 million opioid pills every day.)

The researchers said while they found a correlation in that data, they can't definitively prove that marijuana is the cause for this reduction. However, other studies have shown that opioid addicts both use less painkillers and are also more likely to give up their addictions when they're given access to marijuana.

So once again, another scientific study shows marijuana can be an alternative for opioids. Where are the scientific studies showing the death penalty can do the same thing?

(h/t NPR)