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1 CN AB: Police Shut Down Two DispensariesFri, 22 Dec 2017
Source:Metro (Edmonton, CN AB) Author:Maimann, Kevin Area:Alberta Lines:95 Added:12/27/2017

Several people now face drugrelated charges

It's not legal yet.

Police sent out a stern warning Thursday after shutting down two cannabis dispensaries in south Edmonton - including one that required prescriptions for purchase - and making several arrests.

"We want the owners and employees of these illegal cannabis operations to be aware that they're breaking the law, and that we'll continue to enforce that law until such time those laws are changed," said Edmonton Police Service Insp. Shane Perka.

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2CN AB: OPED: Objections To Medical Cannabis 'Dead Wrong'Fri, 22 Dec 2017
Source:Edmonton Journal (CN AB) Author:Moir, James Area:Alberta Lines:Excerpt Added:12/27/2017

College's information outdated, says James Moir.

The Alberta College of Family Physicians (ACFP) recently published a statement reflecting their stance on medical cannabis, basically stating there is insufficient evidence to recommend it, and that adverse effects outweigh any benefits.

As a physician working in Edmonton's only legitimate "physician-and-nurse-run" cannabinoid medical clinic, I must object strongly to this stance. I have an MD from the University of Alberta, with five years' subspecialty training in anesthesiology and pain medicine, and have over 20 years clinical experience in this area. I have five years' experience in perioperative medicine and extra training in cannabinoid medicine, which allows me to prescribe medical cannabis and work in the clinic, where I have been for the better part of a year.

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3 CN ON: Up In SmokeFri, 22 Dec 2017
Source:Cape Breton Post (CN NS) Author:Ubelacker, Sheryl Area:Ontario Lines:161 Added:12/27/2017

Medical users fear legalized recreational pot may leave them behind

For Mandy McKnight, the benefits of cannabis oil to treat her son Liam's debilitating seizures seem almost miraculous - the nine-year-old has gone from being wracked daily by dozens of the life-threatening episodes to having days now when he experiences none.

But like many Canadians authorized by doctors to use marijuana to treat a wide range of medical disorders, McKnight is worried what will happen when recreational pot for adults becomes legally available through government-sanctioned retail outlets in July.

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4 US: Soaring Overdose Deaths Cut Us Life Expectancy For 2nd YearThu, 21 Dec 2017
Source:Philadelphia Daily News (PA) Author:Stobbe, Mike Area:United States Lines:114 Added:12/21/2017

A runaway teen to mother: 'I'll be fine mommy. I love you.' Hours later she and two others were dead

NEW YORK (AP) - U.S. deaths from drug overdoses skyrocketed 21 percent last year, and for the second straight year dragged down how long Americans are expected to live.

The government figures released Thursday put drug deaths at 63,600, up from about 52,000 in 2015. For the first time, the powerful painkiller fentanyl and its close opioid cousins played a bigger role in the deaths than any other legal or illegal drug, surpassing prescription pain pills and heroin.

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5Canada: Research Lacking On Medical Pot: Doctors' GroupsThu, 14 Dec 2017
Source:National Post (Canada) Author:Omand, Geordon Area:Canada Lines:Excerpt Added:12/17/2017

Drug may do more harm than good, say critics

VANCOUVER * There is little to no research to support the supposed benefits of medical cannabis, and what evidence exists suggests that using marijuana as medicine may do more harm than good, family doctors' associations across Canada are telling their members.

A trio of advisories prepared by the Alberta College of Family Physicians has been distributed to more than 32,000 clinicians, summarizing the scientific literature, or lack thereof, around medicinal marijuana.

"One thing that was quite consistent was adverse events," said Dr. Mike Allan, a professor of family medicine at the University of Alberta in Edmonton. "And the benefits, even if they're real, are much smaller than what people might anticipate."

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6CN QU: Series Part One: Love Death In The Time Of FentanylSat, 09 Dec 2017
Source:Montreal Gazette (CN QU) Author:Fidelman, Charlie Area:Quebec Lines:Excerpt Added:12/09/2017

Part One in a series of profiles about the escalating opioid crisis in Quebec.

Martin Pare's fascination with syringes started as a child at a racetrack. He saw a veterinarian stick a needle in a horse's neck. What's he doing? the boy asked his father. It's to make the horse run faster, his father replied. After the horse won his race, the boy furtively took the needle and empty vial from the garbage. At home, he filled his syringe with water and began injecting his toy stuffed animals.

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7 US MD: Maryland, After Delays, Begins The Sale Of Medical MarijuanaFri, 01 Dec 2017
Source:Baltimore Sun (MD)          Area:Maryland Lines:78 Added:12/01/2017

Maryland began the sale of medical marijuana to residents in pain on Friday, ending years of delays by embarking on a program that features some of the most liberal policies in the nation on who can qualify for the prescribed cannabis.

Dozens of people stood outside a licensed dispensary in Montgomery County, Potomac Holistics, where owners began making sales soon after receiving their first shipment Friday afternoon.

"You can tell there's a buzz, and we're excited for so many reasons," Askinazi said. "We're giving care to people who need it."

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8 CN BC: PUB LTE: Questions Doctors Of B.C. Position On PotThu, 30 Nov 2017
Source:Valley Voice, The (CN BC) Author:Joyce, Art Area:British Columbia Lines:68 Added:11/30/2017

Reading the CBC News report, 'Associations call for ban on homegrown weed in BC once it becomes legal,' I have to question the judgment of the Doctors of BC, who default to pharmaceutical drugs quite unquestioningly, yet challenge more natural modes of treatment such as cannabis and homeopathy.

Cannabis cannot be tied to a single death or overdose. Meanwhile we are experiencing an opioid crisis. The CDC noted in one report that: "Among the more than 64,000 drug overdose deaths estimated in 2016, the sharpest increase occurred among deaths related to fentanyl and fentanyl analogs (synthetic opioids) with over 20,000 overdose deaths." According to news website Vox, "More Americans died of drug overdoses in 2016 than died in the entirety of the Vietnam War - the result of the US's opioid epidemic."

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9 US CA: Extreme Marijuana Use Linked To Vomiting SyndromeTue, 28 Nov 2017
Source:Fresno Bee, The (CA) Author:Bartolone, Pauline Area:California Lines:143 Added:11/29/2017

For 17 years, Chalfonte LeNee Queen suffered periodic episodes of violent retching and abdominal pain that would knock her off her feet for days, sometimes leaving her writhing on the floor in pain.

"I've screamed out for death," said Queen, 48, who lives in San Diego. "I've cried out for my mom who's been dead for 20 years, mentally not realizing she can't come to me."

Queen lost a modeling job after being mistaken for an alcoholic. She racked up tens of thousands of dollars in medical bills, and her nausea interrupted her sex life. Towards the end of her illness, Queen, who stands 5-foot-9, weighed in at a frail 109 pounds.

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10 CN ON: Talking Pot A What It Will Mean When It's LegalSat, 25 Nov 2017
Source:Record, The (Kitchener, CN ON) Author:Monteiro, Liz Area:Ontario Lines:130 Added:11/29/2017

KITCHENER - At gatherings with family and friends, it's common for people to sit and chat as they enjoy a glass of wine.

Drinking alcohol is legal and regulated by the government, but too much of it causes impairment and your long-term health could be at risk.

The same could be said for marijuana.

The now illicit drug will soon be legal, regulated and sold by the government. Smoking it daily could lead to a dependency, healthcare professionals say.

But the stigma associated with dope smoking remains.

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11 CN AB: Clearing The Air On Marijuana MythsWed, 22 Nov 2017
Source:Metro (Edmonton, CN AB) Author:Maimann, Kevin Area:Alberta Lines:78 Added:11/22/2017

U of A prof calls misinformation about pot 'alarming'

In light of the Alberta government announcing its regulations for the retail sale of marijuana, Metro spoke with a public health expert Tuesday to clarify some hazy topics around legalization.

Elaine Hyshka, professor in the University of Alberta's school of public health and co-chair of the Minister's Opioid Emergency Response Commission, said it's "alarming" how much misinformation circulates on cannabis, and she helped us bust the myths.

Myth #1: Legalization will lead to a spike in cannabis use among young people

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12 CN ON: Pot Dispensary Employee Gets $10 FineFri, 17 Nov 2017
Source:Record, The (Kitchener, CN ON) Author:Paul, Gordon Area:Ontario Lines:71 Added:11/21/2017

KITCHENER - A judge who granted an absolute discharge to a Kitchener couple running an illegal marijuana dispensary has handed out a tiny fine to one of them for careless storage of a loaded handgun.

Nour Louka, 30, owned and operated the Waterloo Dispensary, which sold marijuana out of a second-floor business on King Street in uptown Waterloo. Her husband, Shady Louka, 32, was a part-time, temporary employee.

Justice Colin Westman had said in July that he would grant an absolute discharge and he made it official on Thursday.

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13US NY: There's A New Condition Eligible For Medical Marijuana In NYWed, 15 Nov 2017
Source:Journal News, The (NY) Author:Vaughn, Natasha Area:New York Lines:Excerpt Added:11/15/2017

ALBANY - New Yorkers who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder will now be able to use medical marijuana as a form of treatment.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed a law Saturday that added PTSD to the list of conditions eligible for medical marijuana in New York.

"As of today, marijuana will be legalized if a doctor authorizes and finds the condition of PTSD for a veteran, and I think that can help thousands of veterans. It's something that we've been talking about for a long time, and I'm glad we're taking action," Cuomo said.

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14 US MI: You Can Be Fired For Medical Marijuana. Advocates Want That ToMon, 13 Nov 2017
Source:Detroit Free Press (MI) Author:Lehr, Sarah Area:Michigan Lines:203 Added:11/14/2017

Can you be fired in Michigan for using medical marijuana?

Joseph Casias injured his knee at the Battle Creek Wal-Mart where he worked in 2009.

Per company policy, he took a drug test. It came back positive.

Casias had been using marijuana at home to treat pain from sinus cancer and an inoperable brain tumor.

The American Civil Liberties Union sued on his behalf for wrongful discharge in violation of the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act.

A U.S. District Judge sided with the company. The U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals later upheld the ruling.

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15 US FL: Medical Marijuana Dispensary Now Open In Palm Beach CountyTue, 14 Nov 2017
Source:Sun-Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, FL) Author:Swisher, Skyler Area:Florida Lines:100 Added:11/14/2017

Palm Beach County's first medical marijuana dispensary is now open for business.

At noon Tuesday, Knox Medical opened the center at 1 South Dixie Highway in Lake Worth, across the street from Lake Worth City Hall.

The dispensary occupies a former bank building in downtown Lake Worth, and the interior resembles a dentist or doctor's office. Patients check in at the foyer and then can proceed to a room with glass display cases showcasing Knox Medical's products.

Knox Medical CEO Jose Javier Hidalgo said the new dispensary will improve access to medical cannabis for everyone in South Florida.

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16 Canada: Plan To Tax Medical Marijuana Spurs OutrageSat, 11 Nov 2017
Source:Globe and Mail (Canada) Author:Leblanc, Daniel Area:Canada Lines:139 Added:11/13/2017

Advocates say Ottawa's proposed excise levy will simply penalize the sick

The federal government has angered proponents of medical cannabis and the opposition by announcing that its planned excise tax on recreational products will also apply to marijuana that is used to treat various illnesses.

A large number of groups had been calling on Ottawa to remove the sales tax that is currently imposed on medical marijuana. Instead, they were shocked to learn on Friday that sales taxes will continue to apply on medical marijuana, but also that an excise tax of $1 a gram will be added on the product.

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17 CN ON: OPED: How Canada Can Properly Deal With The Opioid CrisisTue, 07 Nov 2017
Source:Toronto Star (CN ON) Author:Vaccarino, Cara Area:Ontario Lines:104 Added:11/11/2017

Canada's response to the opioid crisis has been fragmented and marginally effective at best. We deserve a better approach, and the answers are out there. Other countries are effectively dealing with the issue and Canada should be more open to learning from them. There are several key steps we can take to ensure Canadians with addiction can lead healthier, happier and more productive lives.

First, we need to recognize this is actually a crisis. Do you remember SARS and how it impacted every Canadian with a focused response from our public health teams? Forty-four Canadians died from SARS. How about AIDS at its peak in 1995? We all were aware of the crisis and as Canadians we worked together diligently to help. That year about 1,400 people died from AIDS. Compare this to over 2,400 Canadians dying from opioid overdoses in 2016 and the number likely to double in 2017.

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18 US IL: LTE: Restrict, Don't Increase, Access To MarijuanaMon, 06 Nov 2017
Source:Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL) Author:Deckard, Bill Area:Illinois Lines:42 Added:11/06/2017

An Oct. 28 letter to the Daily Herald advocated greater access to marijuana for people suffering chronic pain, citing a study in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). But if you visit the JAMA website and enter the search word "marijuana," you'll also see dozens of articles showing that marijuana can kill more than just pain: it can negatively impact things like cognitive function, moral clarity and the general health and well-being of users and their children and grandchildren.

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19 US PA: Medical marijuana in Pennsylvania: How Patients Can Sign UpThu, 02 Nov 2017
Source:Morning Call (Allentown, PA) Author:Wagaman, Andrew Area:Pennsylvania Lines:84 Added:11/02/2017

The Pennsylvania Department of Health on Wednesday pledged to make medical marijuana available to patients by May and released a list of 109 approved practitioners statewide.

It also launched the medical marijuana patient and caregiver registry, with instructions on how those interested can sign up. More than 200,000 patients across the state could qualify for medical marijuana treatment.

Pennsylvanians with 17 medical conditions are eligible for medical marijuana patient ID cards.

Those conditions are Lou Gehrig's disease, autism, cancer, Crohn's disease, epilepsy, glaucoma, HIV/AIDS, Huntington's disease, inflammatory bowel disease, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, post-traumatic stress disorder, sickle cell anemia, spinal cord damage, chronic pain, neuropathies and intractable seizures.

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20 CN BC: PUB LTE: Patients Hurt By Council's Effort To Shut DownWed, 25 Oct 2017
Source:Daily Courier, The (CN BC) Author:Robichaud, Monik Area:British Columbia Lines:63 Added:10/30/2017

Editor: I am one of the 700 medical patients that is being affected by West Kelowna city council. I am told that I am like most of the other clients that happily visit the Black Crow Herbals weekly for my medication.

I am older (57) and need help in maintaining my health due to chronic back pain (since 2004), constant nausea, etc.

Three years ago, my doctor sadly told me that he could not continue providing prescriptions for percocet to help me with my constant pain, since narcotics were being abused throughout the country.

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