What is medical cannabis—and how can it help Arkansans?
Cannabis is a medicinal plant with dozens of peer-reviewed studies demonstrating its many uses. It is non-toxic, non-addictive, and can work when all other medicines fail.
Cannabis may be ingested via pills, ointments, tinctures, edible foods, and via vaporization or smoking.
Patients suffering with HIV/AIDS, glaucoma, cancer and chemotherapy, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, and other illnesses find that cannabis relieves their symptoms—sometimes when nothing else will.
Cannabis’s medical applications include:
- Relief from nausea & appetite loss
- Reduction of intraocular pressure
- Reduction of muscle spasms
- Relief from chronic pain
Issue 7, the Arkansas Medical Cannabis Act in action: how it works!
Issue 7 is a comprehensive blueprint for establishing and regulating a medical cannabis program in Arkansas.
Overseen by the Arkansas Department of Health (ADH), it provides for 38 non-profit Cannabis Care Centers across the state. Counties and cities will have the ability to ban centers. The ADH will have the ability to add more, if the need arises.
Patients must be given a written recommendation by an Arkansas physician, then obtain a license from the Department of Health before they can purchase medicine from a Cannabis Care Center.
The ADH will establish a sliding-scale price structure for patients who qualify as low-income.
Patients living more than 20 miles away from a care center may grow up to five mature plants (measuring more than 12”) and five seedings. The cultivation area must be enclosed and locked, and will be registered with and inspected by the ADH.
What is public opinion on medical cannabis?
A January 2010 nationwide ABC News/Washington Post poll found that 81% of Americans think that doctors should “be allowed to prescribe cannabis for medical purposes.”
What is the current legal status of medical cannabis?
So far 25 states and the District of Columbia have enacted laws that allow seriously ill patients to use cannabis with a doctor’s recommendation.
Where do doctors stand on cannabis?
A 2005 national survey of physicians found that 73% approve of cannabis use to alleviate symptoms such as chronic fatigue, nausea, and pain commonly associated with AIDS, cancer and glaucoma; and 76% approve of state laws allowing the use of cannabis to alleviate chronic fatigue and pain.
After analyzing existing data on cannabis’s therapeutic uses, the National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicine concluded in a 1999 report funded by the White House drug policy office that “there are some limited circumstances in which we recommend smoking cannabis for medical uses.”
The American College of Physicians, American Public Health Association, American Nurses Association, American Academy of HIV Medicine, Lymphoma Foundation of America, Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, and many other medical institutions support safe and legal access to medical cannabis for patients whose doctors recommend it.