Feb 142015
 February 14, 2015

medical marijuana doctorBy Paul Armentano, NORML Deputy Director

Newly appointed US Surgeon General Vivek Murthy believes that cannabis possesses therapeutic utility — an acknowledgment that contradicts the plant’s present placement as a Schedule I controlled substance under federal law.

Speaking to CBS News, Murthy said: “We have some preliminary data showing that for certain medical conditions and symptoms that marijuana can be helpful.” He added, “I think we have to use that data to drive policy making and I’m very interested to see where that data takes us.”

Dr. Murthy was confirmed as US Surgeon General late last year.

His statements appear to be inconsistent with the Schedule I classification of marijuana under federal law — a scheduling that defines the plant and its organic compounds as possessing “no currently accepted medical use …. in the United States” and lacking “accepted safety … under medical supervision.”

Next week in Sacramento, a federal judge will hear final arguments in a motion challenging the constitutionality of cannabis’ Schedule I classification. In October, defense counsel and experts presented evidence over a five day period arguing that the scientific literature is not supportive of the plant’s present categorization.

Briefs in this ongoing federal case are available online here.

[Update: Perhaps predictably, the Surgeon General has dialed back his initial comments to CBS News. Late last night, The Department of Health and Human Services issued a statement attributed to Murthy stating: “Marijuana policy — and all public health policies — should be driven by science. I believe that marijuana should be subjected to the same, rigorous clinical trials and scientific scrutiny that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) applies to all new medications. The Federal Government has and continues to fund research on possible health benefits of marijuana and its components. While clinical trials for certain components of marijuana appear promising for some medical conditions, neither the FDA nor the Institute of Medicine have found smoked marijuana to meet the standards for safe and effective medicine for any condition to date.”

Interesting that Dr. Murthy cites the IOM which hasn’t formally commented on the issue of medical marijuana since releasing its report some 15 years ago, long before the results of FDA-approved clinical trials like this had been completed. Also notable that he leans on the FDA for guidance when the agency largely does not review the safety and efficacy of botanical products.]

Source: NORML - make a donation

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  14 Responses to “US Surgeon General Acknowledges “Marijuana Can Be Helpful””

  1.  

    No matter how many studies they do is still not a class1 it should not even be listed as a narcotic it is an herb

  2.  

    Bull crap the FDA approves prescription drugs in e few short years and manufacturing companies get sued because half the crap will give you something worse. The FDA ALLOWS ALL KINDS OF CHEMICALS TO be given to us in foods, drinks and pills most of the crap they think of it as little to miner side effects. So chemical pesticides are safe in certain amounts.How about food colors. Yet these same FDA administration say Marijuana is unsafe even though people have been testing it since before recorded history. Every day millions of people do testing on Marijuana. The drug companies only need a few hundred tested for a few months to get approved. The surgeon General just chickened out when someone called him and told him to change what he originally said.

  3.  

    Of course it has medicinal value. Why do you think the government owns a patent on its medical properties? Look up patent #6630507 it will make you sick…

  4.  

    Medical Marijuana is more than “helpful.” It’s a true “Wonder Drug” for a wide range of conditions, and in many cases the only medication that works — Google Medical Marijuana testimonials. For Cancer patients Medical Marijuana is a true “Gift from God” for reducing the horrible pain and suffering that comes with having Cancer and the horrible side effects of Chemotherapy — Cancer patients swear by it — and now more and more Cancer patients are using High Dose Medical Marijuana Oil Therapy (HDMMOT) to help cure their Cancer, achieving long term remission even for cases where — when they started using it — their Cancer had been at stage 4 and they had been at death’s door. Cancer Patients swear by it — Google Medical Marijuana Cancer patient testimonials.

    Is not just a crime to leave Marijuana on Schedule 1. Its IMMORAL, and its a MORAL IMPERATIVE to remove it from Schedule 1 IMMEDIATELY.

    First thing Monday morning, please call the White House comment line at (202) 456-1111 and ask that Marijuana be removed from Schedule 1 IMMEDIATELY.

    American’s Cancer Patients will thank you. :-)

  5.  

    Medical Marijuana is more than “helpful.” It’s a true “Wonder Drug” for a wide range of conditions, and in many cases the only medication that works — Google Medical Marijuana testimonials. For Cancer patients Medical Marijuana is a true “Gift from God” for reducing the horrible pain and suffering that comes with having Cancer and the horrible side effects of Chemotherapy — Cancer patients swear by it — and now more and more Cancer patients are using High Dose Medical Marijuana Oil Therapy (HDMMOT) to help cure their Cancer, achieving long term remission even for cases where — when they started using it — their Cancer had been at stage 4 and they had been at death’s door. Cancer Patients swear by it — Google Medical Marijuana Cancer patient testimonials.

  6.  

    First thing Monday morning, please call the White House comment line at (202) 456-1111 and ask that Marijuana be removed from Schedule 1 IMMEDIATELY.

    American’s Cancer Patients will thank you. :-)

  7.  

    The surgeon general might not have been “dialing back” his comments, at least with respect to marijuana being taken off of Schedule 1. His only negative comment is reserved for “smoked marijuana.” That says to me that he’s signaling for marijuana to be taken off of Schedule 1, but that he’s got a problem with that particular delivery method.

    My guess is, given the overwhelming evidence of the benefits of Medical Marijuana for a wide range of medical conditions, the judge in California will do the right thing and say that it doesn’t meet the criteria of “having no medical benefit” and being in he class of the most dangerous drugs in the world, that are the requirements for being on Schedule 1 and rule, within 30 days, to remove it from Schedule 1, which would be a “Gift from God” of thousands and thousands of American Cancer patients.

  8.  

    Even with the statement the original interview will have a positive impact and will be quoted without the statement!

  9.  

    A dominio falls

  10.  

    The old boy must have been a stoner back in the day……..anyone who ever fired one up could have told big bro that. peace

  11.  

    Weed, it does the body good. :-)

  12.  

    The FDA doesn’t regulate naturals, IE: garlic, colloidal silver, echinacea, etc.. Nor does it regulate vitamins and minerals. All of these have ‘medicinal’ powers to a degree but because they are made from natural plants and rocks there is no need for regulation.

    The FDA regulates drugs that are created.

    Regulation is needed to prevent poisoning or death from man made chemical medicines produced in a laboratory.

    There is no regulation needed if an herb CANNOT kill anyone.

    Marijuana needs to be DE-Scheduled not RE-scheduled, no FDA over-site needed any more than garlic.
    (BTW, garlic and colloidal silver were the only antibiotics prior to penicillin, crushed garlic produces tetracycline)

    Cannabis needs to be classified as an herb with medicinal benefits and possible psychoactive properties that are practically harmless.

    •  

      This is the point we must make, not only in our country, but to the world. In conjunction with research in cannabis friendly European Nations many are not using our method of “legalize a little, IF one is on their deathbed,” they go total legalization. These are not third world countries, this is no questions asked medical in Israel and legalization in Germany, period! No fighting, no debating, no special considerations full legality. Aren’t these people our friends? Is there any reason we should not trust their findings? Isn’t evidence of pre-historic use, the potential reason mankind took up farming, and is complete acceptance of cannabis as a medicine until 1942 not reason enough. Hasn’t mankind had enough experience with this herb to demand its legality without another 50 years of argument concerning its safety!!! Both McCarthy and Nixon are dead as well as Barry Goldwater, let’s let the ideals concerning cannabis in those days die. Along with all the other witch hunts and megalomanic fears of those newly America destroying “secret weapon” days not to mention the nukes!!!.

  13.  

    Anyone needs a grinder for those medical marijuana?

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