PHIL420

Patient Advocate since 1977


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Mayoclinic.org DOSING….

The below doses are based on scientific research, publications, traditional use, or expert opinion. Many herbs and supplements have not been thoroughly tested, and safety and effectiveness may not be proven. Brands may be made differently, with variable ingredients, even within the same brand. The below doses may not apply to all products. You should read product labels, and discuss doses with a qualified healthcare provider before starting therapy.

Adults (18 years and older)

To treat amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (nerve cell disease), 10 milligrams of THC has been taken by mouth daily for two weeks.

To prevent nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy, five milligrams per meter squared of dronabinol (Marinol®) has been taken by mouth 1-3 hours before chemotherapy, then every 2-4 hours after chemotherapy, for a total of 4-6 doses daily. A dose of two milligrams of nabilone has been taken by mouth the night before chemotherapy, 1-3 hours before and after chemotherapy. A dose of 2-3 milligrams of nabilone has been taken by mouth 2-4 times daily. A dose of three milligrams of nabilone has been taken by mouth three times daily as a one-time dose, a four-day duration, and the duration of two cycles of chemotherapy. Cannabinoids have been taken by mouth over a 24-hour period as follows: 1-8 milligrams of nabilone daily as 1-4 milligrams daily, one milligram 3-5 times daily, or two milligrams 2-4 times daily or 24-50 milligrams per meter squared of dronabinol daily as 10 milligrams per meter squared 4-5 times daily, 12 milligrams per meter squared twice daily, or 15 milligrams twice daily. A dose of one milligram of nabilone has been taken by mouth 8-12 hours before chemotherapy, followed by 0.5-2 milligrams of nabilone 2-3 times daily after chemotherapy, depending on body weight. A dose of 10 milligrams per meter squared of THC has been taken by mouth two hours before and four, eight, 16, and 24 hours after chemotherapy. Cannabinoids have been injected into the muscle over the course of 24 hours in the form of 0.5-1 milligrams of levonantradol three times daily.

To treat atopic dermatitis (itchy, scaly skin rashes), hemp seed oil has been taken by mouth for 20 weeks.

To increase appetite in people with cancer, 2.5 milligrams of THC has been taken by mouth with or without one milligram of CBD for six weeks.

To treat chronic pain, cannabinoids have been taken by mouth in the form of capsules or sprayed into the mouth as THC, benzopyranoperidine (BPP), cannabidiol (CBD), nabilone, dronabinol, or synthetic nitrogen THC analogs (NIB), with doses of 2.5-20 milligrams for an average of 25 days. Cannabis-based medicines have been used for 1-6 weeks. Ajulemic acid has been used for one week. Doses of nabilone of 0.25-2 milligrams have been used daily for 4-6 weeks. Doses of smoked cannabis of 1-9.4 percent have been used for six hours to 14 days. Cannabis has been smoked 3-4 times daily for five days. Doses of dronabinol of 10-20 milligrams have been used daily for six hours to six weeks. In people with cancer, 5-20 milligrams of delta-9-THC has been taken by mouth daily, as have the following doses: 2-8 milligrams of nabilone by mouth daily; 0.25-1 milligram of nabilone by mouth daily for four weeks; 1-2 milligrams of nabilone twice daily for a year; 1-2 milligrams of nabilone twice at an eight-hour interval; and 0.5 milligrams of nabilone twice daily for seven days, followed by two milligrams daily for three weeks. A dose of 0.5-1 milligrams of nabilone has been taken twice daily. A dose of 10 milligrams of THC has been taken by mouth, increasing to a maximum tolerated dose for six weeks. A mouth sprayhas been used in divided doses of 2.5-120 milligrams for two weeks. Doses of Sativex® have been sprayed into the mouth, up to 48 sprays daily, for 1-2 weeks, then 10-15 sprays daily, or 4-8 sprays, with eight being the maximum one-time dose or within a three-hour period.

To improve appetite in people with cystic fibrosis (mucus buildup in the organs), a dose of 2.5 milligrams of dronabinol has been taken by mouth, increasing to a maximum of 10 milligrams daily for 1-6 months.

To treat dementia, 2.5 milligrams of dronabinol has been taken by mouth twice daily for six weeks.

To treat eating disorders, 7.5-30 milligrams of THC has been taken by mouth daily for four weeks.

To treat epilepsy, 200-300 milligrams of CBD has been taken by mouth daily for up to 4.5 months.

To improve fatty acid status, hemp seed oil has been taken by mouth.

To treat movement problems caused by Huntington’s disease, 1-2 milligrams of nabilone has been taken by mouth daily for five weeks. A dose of 10 milligrams per kilogram of CBD has been taken by mouth daily for six weeks.

To treat sleep disorders, 40-160 milligrams of CBD has been taken by mouth.

To treat multiple sclerosis symptoms, 2.5 milligrams of dronabinol (Marinol®) has been taken by mouth daily, increasing to a maximum of 10 milligrams daily for three weeks. A dose of 15-30 milligrams of cannabis extract capsules has been taken by mouth in five-milligram increments, based on tolerance, for 14 days. Cannabis extracts, including Cannador®, have been taken by mouth for 2-4 weeks. Cannabis plant extracts containing 2.5-120 milligrams of a THC-CBD combination have been taken by mouth daily for 2-15 weeks. A mouth spray (Sativex®, containing 2.7 milligrams of THC and 2.5 milligrams of CBD) has been used at a dose of 2.5-120 milligrams in divided doses for up to eight weeks. Eight sprays within any three hours, up to 48 sprays in a 24-hour period, have been used. Sativex® has been sprayed into the mouth for 6-14 weeks.

As a nutritional supplement, 15-30 milliliters of hemp oil has been taken by mouth daily.

To treat schizophrenia, 40-1,280 milligrams of CBD has been taken by mouth daily for up to four weeks.

To treat Tourette’s syndrome, gelatin capsules containing 2.5-10 milligrams of THC have been taken by mouth as a single dose. A dose of 2.5 milligrams of THC has been taken by mouth daily, increasing to 10 milligrams daily in 2.5-milligram intervals over a four-day time period for six weeks.

To treat rheumatoid arthritis, up to six sprays of Sativex® have been used once daily 30 minutes before bed for five weeks.

To treat glaucoma (increased eye pressure), a single dose of five milligrams of THC has been placed under the tongue. A dose of 20-40 milligrams of CBD has been placed under the tongue as a single dose; however, 40 milligrams appeared to increase eye pressure.

Children (under 18 years old)

There is no proven safe or effective dose for marijuana in children.


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2018 is approaching, meaning the state of California will be REGULATING cannabis!

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https://www.cannabisbusinessexecutive.com/2017/02/voting-on-cannabis-regulation-in-los-angeles-measure-m-or-measure-n/

In my previous corporate life I was never exposed to, nor realized the complexities of public policy, politics, and true government regulation. Three years later I read senate and legislative bills like I did with the Girl with the Dragon Tattoo series, just waiting for the next! I will preface this with the fact that I’m not a lawyer nor was training in law (beyond high school constitution team) and my expertise is in business process improvement, finance and accounting.  This article is meant to give a business view and break down of cannabis regulation in the City of Los Angeles.

We voted on medical marijuana back in 1996, 19 years later Gerry Brown signed into effect 3 bills to regulate cannabis, and hopefully by January 1, 2018, the State of California will begin to issue licenses out under the Medical Marijuana program.

There are many obstacles that cannabis operators in California continue to battle, and that is the fact that to apply for a MCRSA / State cannabis license, a cannabis operator must received permission from the local government.

Cannabis Regulation in the City of Los Angeles

Los Angeles has a thriving cannabis community, and it has for quite some time. If you just google “Cannabis Los Angeles” you’re screen will be filled with articles and sites dedicated to the cannabis community, from infused dining experiences to L.A. Weekly’s pot guide. However, the paradigm between end consumer, the trail blazers of the cannabis movement and the City of Los Angeles law enforcement and L.A. City Council is one that has evolved just as turbulent as a relationship with a crazed in-law. Here’s a quick timeline overview, you can read something more detailed here:

1996-2014

  • 1996: California Voters Passes Prop 215 to legalize medical cannabis, making California the first state to legalize medical marijuana. Being the first, the wording is super grey not giving a ton of guidance on many things that regulators are demanding 20 years later (packaging, testing, licensing structure, etc).
  • 2003: Senate Bill 420 is passed. SB 420 clarifies a few things in prop 215 such as the scope of the law and which government agencies were in charge of enforcing it.
  • 2003-2007: Pot shops and green crosses pop up at an exponential rate in the City of Los Angeles.
  • 2007:  The Medical Marijuana Interim Control Ordinance (ICO) was passed as the City of Los Angeles’ temporary moratorium on new medical cannabis dispensaries. Existing dispensaries had a deadline to register with the city to obtain this filing. The ICO was intended to control the proliferation of dispensaries while the City of Los Angeles developed permanent regulations for medical cannabis uses.
  • 2010: Adult Use of Cannabis is on the ballot in California and does not pass.
  • 2013: On January 29, 2013, by an 8-4 vote, the Los Angeles City Council voted to refer Measure D to the ballot.  (Note: there were a few other ballot initiatives related to cannabis regulation) Measure D allows the 135 dispensaries approved under the interim control ordinance of September 2007 to stay open, if they follow the city’s rules on proximity to schools, churches and neighborhoods. Prop D prohibits to entrance to the market.

2015 – present

  • November 2015: MCRSA (Medical bills to regulate cannabis) is signed by Gerry Brown.
  • 2016: Cities and Counties ban cannabis and work out local regulations. Cities like Dessert Hot Springs, Coachella Valley, and Adelanto open their arms to cannabis operators.
  • 2016: AB 2385 is initiated. AB 2385 would abolish the creation of local MCRSA licensing, permitting, or authorizations in L.A. while enforcing the status quo of Proposition D. This was later vetoed by the CA Governor. 
  • November 2016: California passes Prop 64, allowing the adult use of cannabis opening up California to new capital.
  • November 2016: City of Los Angeles sponsors ballot initiative M for March 2017
  • Present Day: Everything beyond the Pre-ICO dispensaries is illegal in Los Angeles

Measure M and Measure N

Los Angeles voters will be voting on two measures for cannabis regulation under the medical program, which are Measure M and Measure 9. Below is an overview of both programs. You can read all of the city initiatives here.

Measure M Measure N
 Sponsored by:  City and Los Angeles Major Citizen-sponsored initiative.
 Prop D:  Repeals and Replaces Prop D. Those that have have a pre-ICO/Proposition D authority, may continue to operate within the City at the one location identified in its original or amended business tax registration certificate until they apply for and receive a final response to their application for a City permit or license for commercial cannabis activity being conducted at that location. This initiative would grant priority licensing and other preferences to dispensaries operating under Proposition D if they are in substantial compliance with the law.
License Types
  • Cultivation,
  • Manufacturing
  • Lab
  • Distribution
  • Transport
  • Retail
  • Cultivation,
  • Manufacturing
  • Lab
  • Distribution
  • Transport
  • Retail
 Tax Structure:
  • 10% gross receipts from adult use sales
  • 5% Gross Receipts from sales of medical cannabis
  • 1% Gross Receipts from transport, testing or research of cannabis and/or cannabis products;
  • 2% of gross receipts from manufacture or cultivation
  • 2%  of gross receipts from the commercialization of cannabis and/or cannabis products not specifically taxed under the rates specified above.
  • 8% gross receipts from adult use sales
  • 6% Gross Receipts from sales of medical cannabis
Limit to licenses? No. Barriers to entry are low. The measure limits permits to 135 cannabis establishments
Advertising Allows parents and teachers to help determine how to keep children from being exposed to advertising of marijuana products Initiative Ordinance N would permit advertising of marijuana products where it can be seen by children and teens.
Other Thoughts Gives a lot of room for the community to act and shape the law. Local areas will decide how many retail shops they want, law enforcement will work on drugged driving rules, and provides business leaders the ability to recommend how to limit the number of marijuana stores in commercial areas to avoid market saturation.  Initiative Ordinance N would create a monopoly on licenses to sell marijuana and freeze out any competition.Will grant 135 dispensaries a 10 or 10A license and allow them to apply for a cultivation license prior to other cannabis operators.
Expected Date of Implementation September 30, 2017 (Which is a Saturdaybtw)  January 31, 2018 (which is a Wednesday) is when the city would begin granting licenses.

The City of Los Angeles recommends that voters choose Measure M.


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THE HAGUE, NETHERLANDS – In a historic vote, the Dutch Parliament voted today in favor of a law proposal, adding cannabis cultivation to it’s country famous tolerance policy: 77 voted in favor, 72 against.

Dutch Parliament votes in favor of cannabis cultivation law proposal

THE HAGUE, NETHERLANDS – In a historic vote, the Dutch Parliament voted today in favor of a law proposal, adding cannabis cultivation to it’s country famous tolerance policy: 77 voted in favor, 72 against.

The bill will remove the grey area between illegal cultivation and licensed cannabis sale and will also introduce quality controls.

The so-called “backdoor problem” is the biggest paradox of the Dutch cannabis policy: coffeeshops are allowed to sell cannabis under strict conditions, but any wholesale buying or production and cultivation is strictly prohibited.

The proposal still needs to go through the Senate before it officially becomes law. As of writing, it is unclear whether or not this will happen.

UPDATE: the motion to homegrown medicinal cannabis has been adopted.


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ICBC Berlin April 10-12, 2017

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TUESDAY 11.APRIL

8:30 Keynote with U.S. Congressman Dana Rohrabacher
Congressman Dana Rohrbacher (Republicans) heads the subcommittee on Foreign Affairs focused on Europe and Eurasia in the U.S. House of Representatives. The Californian representative is the co-initiator of the Rohrbacher-Farr resolution which was adopted in 2014. It prohibits the justice department to fund resources that interfere with the implementation of state medical marijuana laws.

9:15 Global Medical Cannabis Research
As more peer reviewed research for cannabis is being conducted internationally, it is not a question anymore if cannabis can help patients, rather, it is a question of what types of cannabis are good for what types of ailments, and the most efficient administration methods. Learn the latest breakthroughs and cutting edge science from around the world.

10:15 Break

10:30 Medical Marijuana Rules and Regulations in Germany (Patients, Pharmacies and LPs)
The first licenses for the cultivation of medical cannabis will soon be given out by a federal cannabis agency. Also, acquiring your medical cannabis prescription will soon become a less cumbersome process for patients and doctors. We will delve into the process of becoming a German licensed producer, discuss the process of becoming a medical cannabis patient in Germany, as well as go over the pharmacies’ role as conduits between licensed producers and patients.

11:30  Extractions and Concentrates
Extractions are becoming a massive share of the market in the U.S. Currently, Germany’s medical cannabis patients only have access to flowers. Under the new German laws, extractions will be allowed to be sold in pharmacies. We will go over the most cutting edge, clean and efficient extraction methods and their alternate benefits and discuss how extractions will be implemented into the German market.

12:30 Break

13:30 Dr. Franjo Grotenhermen MD
It took patients 17 years to change the law in favor of medical cannabis. Dr. Franjo Grotenhermen is a MD and an internationally sought after cannabinoid-specialist, supporting Germany’s cannabis patients since over two decades. Dr. Grotenhermen will explain the basics of medical cannabis and its scientific background, while focusing on patients health and their right to safe and reliable medicine

14:30 Testing and Standardization
From seed to sale, what are the best practices for standardizing cannabis for public consumption? Learn from testing models in other respective jurisdictions and experts on production as to what is currently working in terms of delivering a safe and contaminant free product to market.

15:30 Break

15:45 Entourage Effect
In its natural state, over 90% of cannabinoids produced by cannabis plants come in acidic forms. Acidic cannabinoids, such as cannabidiolic acid (CBDA), tetrahydrocannabinol acid (THCA), cannabigerolic acid (CBGA) and their functions remain largely overlooked. This talk will critically review experimental evidence of the therapeutic potential of acidic cannabinoids—as well as discuss the experimental and clinical evidence of the cannabis entourage effect—emphasizing the importance of the interactions between acidic and neutral phytocannabinoids, terpenes, and other compounds found in cannabis plants.

16:15 Celebrity Interview – TBA
Stay tuned for more information.

WEDNESDAY 12.APRIL

9:00 Keynote TBA

9:45 Lobbying for Cannabis
It is no fluke that cannabis policy is changing around the world. Grassroots activists have been campaigning for fifty years to achieve the results we are currently seeing. Not only is advocating on the behalf of cannabis legalization the right thing to do, it is good practice for businesses in their respective communities. Our cannabis advocate experts will go over what steps it has taken to get to this point, as well as tips on future advocacy strategies and tactics.

10:45 Break

11:00 Cannabis and Media
Cannabis is a growingly hot topic in the media. The industry is beginning to boom worldwide and eighty years of prohibition is fading. As marijuana has become more mainstream, the media has adapted to reflect this new paradigm. Our panel of experts will provide a lay of the land for cannabis in the media, providing insight for business people and advocates of a landscape that continues to evolve and gain more acceptance across the globe.

12:00 Consumer Tech and Branding
Cannabis has gone mainstream, which means ratcheting up innovation and focusing on brand are crucial factors for success. Our panel features cannabis industry disrupters discussing the  new competitive paradigm, with a focus on applicable German business models.

13:00 Break

14:00 Genetics: Globalization and Commercialization
As a growing number of countries legalize cannabis and set the groundwork for international commerce, the questions of plant breeders’ rights and Intellectual Property (IP) become paramount. Our panel will feature iconic breeders and leading legal minds examining the impact of global commercialization on plant genetics and IP.

15:00 Cannabis Cultivation and New Technologies
In the last 30 years, many innovations in the cultivation of cannabis have been developed. International commercial growers and producers will report the most efficient, smart and healthy ways to grow cannabis while considering scalability.

16:00 Public Markets Financing and Cannabis Stocks
With investor interest in cannabis at an all-time high, our panel will discuss the possibilities of public cannabis companies in Germany, as well as opportunities in more established areas as Canada. Our panel will include analysts along with COEs of cannabis pub-cos.

U.S. Congressman Dana Rohrabacher

Currently serving his 13th term in Congress, Dana Rohrabacher represents California’s scenic 48th District. He also serves as Chairman of the Europe and Eurasia Subcommittee of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs and is Vice Chairman on the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology. Rohrabacher is a strong voice for lower government spending and taxes. His record of fiscal restraint and pro-growth policies has won him acclaim from the National Taxpayers Union, Citizens Against Government Waste, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Federation of Independent Business.

Franjo Grotenhermen, MD

Born in 1957, academic studies of medicine at the University of Cologne. He is running a medical practice, mainly devoted to the medical use of cannabis and cannabinoids. Dr. Grotenhermen is founder and chairman of the German Association for Cannabis as Medicine (ACM), founder and executive director of the International Association for Cannabinoid Medicines (IACM) (www.cannabis-med.org) and chairman of the Medical Cannabis Declaration (MCD). He is editor of the IACM-Bulletin, which is published bi-weekly in several languages and editor of the internet journal CANNABINOIDS, published on the website of the IACM. He is a principal of the nova-Institute based near Cologne and author of many articles, books and book chapters on the therapeutic potential, pharmacology and toxicology of the cannabinoids.

Steve DeAngelo

Steve DeAngelo, Executive Director of Harborside Health Center in Oakland, California, is a cannabis industry leader, movement strategist and lifelong activist. Steve writes and speaks widely on the subject of cannabis, and his creation of the world’s model medical cannabis dispensary has been extensively covered in national and international news media.

His past accomplishments include organizing I- 59, Washington D.C.’s medical cannabis initiative; Hemp Tour, which brought hemp to the heartland; and Ecolution, Inc., which produced hemp garments and accessories 1990-2000. A Summa Cum Laude graduate of the University of Maryland, Steve is a founding, charter member of ASA (Americans for Safe Access); on the board of the Emerald Growers Association and the star of the Discovery Channel mini series, “Weed Wars” which is currently rolling out internationally.

Linn Baumgardt

As Leafly’s Director of Marketing, Linn Baumgardt continuously strives to elevate the cannabis industry by breaking through barriers and partnering with mainstream companies such as Pandora and Twitter. Linn’s creativity, strategic mindset and drive to push boundaries have been invaluable in establishing Leafly as the fastest-growing privately held company in the Pacific Northwest. By analyzing market trends and legislation around the world she created a custom algorithm that has become the standard for how Leafly approaches new regions and global markets.

In addition, Linn launched Leafly’s largest media campaign, Leafly Vote, in support of cannabis legalization in nine states. Prior to Leafly, Linn worked with companies such as Microsoft, Discovery Channel, and consulted for clients such as Amazon, Sprint,

and Red Box.

Dr. Jokūbas Žiburkus, PhD

Dr. Jokūbas Žiburkus, PhD is a neuroscientist with over 20 peer-reviewed publications and book chapters. He is a tenured Associate Professor at the University of Houston where his research is focusing on epilepsy, traumatic brain injury, and Alzheimer’s disease. The laboratory’s current focus is on cannabinoid actions in the brain and novel treatments for neurological disorders. Žiburkus is a recipient of both the Global Lithuanian Leader Award for intellectual capital dissemination and the University of Houston’s Teaching Excellence Award. He is a recognized public speaker with a widely watched Tedx Talk entitled, “There is something you should know about epilepsy and cannabis.” Žiburkus currently serves on several prestigious scientific, business, and editorial boards, including Dravet Syndrome Foundation’s Scientific and Medical Advisory Board. He is also a co-founder of CannTelligence,an educational and biotechnological innovation hub for cannabis industry-related projects.

Georg Wurth

Georg Wurth is a former local politician of Germany’s Green Party. He has lead the German Hemp Association (DHV) since its foundation in 2002. The organisation is one of Europe’s biggest organizations calling for the regulation of recreational and medical cannabis. With 150,000 Facebook fans and more than 3 million Youtube views, the DHV is powerful on social media. After winning a popular vote, Georg became the first cannabis lobbyist to speak to German Chancellor Merkel about reform. In 2014 Georg’s reform campaign idea won one million Euros on a televised show, after which he launched Europe’s first cinema spot campaign against prohibition.

Ophelia Chong

Ophelia Chong is the creative genius behind Stock Pot Images and Asian Americans for Cannabis Education (AACE). She is driven to help shape the new conversation of Cannabis and is guided by one mission: to advocate for the legalization of cannabis and offer truthful reflections of the faces and communities that embrace cannabis.

After graduating from the Art Center College of Design in 1989, she traveled the world for a few years and found her calling in photography. She began her career as the photographer for David Carson at Raygun Magazine, Sony Music, Mercury, Epitaph, and Interview Magazine. She went on to become the creative director at Strand Releasing, distributing over 50 films to the Sundance, Toronto, New York, Venice, Berlin and Outfest film festivals.  She moved into the stock and assignment photography business next. Since 1999, she has specialized in marketing and designing for photographers, photography monographs and photography agencies.

Ophelia teaches Marketing and Self-Promotion to photography students at the Art Center College of Design since 2010 and is an art director in the MFA writing program at CalArts since 2008.

Ravi Spaarenberg

One of the people most responsible for the company’s success, both in Amsterdam and abroad, Ravi Spaarenberg is one of the most recognizable faces of Sensi Seeds. He is the current executive director, together with his brother, Che Dronkers.

Prior to his current position, Ravi gained his experience by starting at the bottom of the ladder and working his way up. This led him to work at, then manage, the main Sensi Seed Bank and other Sensi locations in Amsterdam for many years. Together with his elder brother Alan Dronkers, he developed several genetic programs and later contributed to successfully evolving Sensi Seeds’ presence internationally, by setting up the company’s wholesale department to answer growing European demand.

Ravi’s hands-on approach and undying passion for the cannabis plant make him a logical choice to lead the company his father established. “I’m happy that at Sensi Seeds, the staff is united by their love for the plant and a drive to improve things.”

Michael Knodt

A Berlin based journalist, Michael is also affiliated with Vice Magazine in Germany.

Alex Rogers

Visionary entrepreneur and political activist, Alex Rogers, is the founder and CEO of three thriving ancillary cannabis businesses. Cutting his teeth as an activist in the early nineties under the tutelage of Jack Herer, Alex has a deep proprietary knowledge of the industry. He has played a key role in professionalizing and mainstreaming the cannabis industry, building one of Oregon’s most popular medical marijuana clinics in a matter of a few years, and the first ever to advertise medical marijuana on network TV in America. He also founded and runs the Oregon Marijuana Business Conference (OMBC), the state’s biggest and longest running cannabis business conference. Living in five different countries throughout his life, and able to communicate in all respective languages, Alex considers himself an international citizen, thusly spawning his latest creation, the International Cannabis Business Conference (ICBC). The ICBC is the first and only cannabis business conference in the world to have multiple dates set in multiple different countries. A Magna Cum Laude graduate in Political Science, he has used his knowledge of law and politics to push cannabis policy forward all over the world.

Ognjen Brborovic

Born 1972 in Zagreb, Croatia. Graduated on Medical School, University of Zagreb in 1998. In 2005 finished postgraduate studies in Public Health and successfully finished residency in Public Health. In 2010 acquired PHD with the thesis Association of formal education and pressure for changing health habits to self-perceived mental and physical health. In 2014 he became Assistant Professor at the Department of Healthcare Organization.

He is author in 20+ scientific papers published in peer reviewed journals.

Since 2003 he is one of the directors of symposium Media and Health that each year gathers most prominent Croatian journalists, politicians and professionals in health & healthcare area. In 2012 he became vice-president of Croatian Public Health Society, one of the societies of Croatian Medical Association.

As a vice-president of Croatian Public Health Society he advocated medical usage of cannabis on numerous occasions, in private encounters, public lectures and media. At the end of 2014 Croatian Minister of Health appointed him as a President of Minister Committee on Medical Cannabis that has successfully finished first phase of work with legal changes necessary to deliver cannabis medicine to patients. Committee’s further tasks are to track medical usage and abuse of cannabis, suggests improvements, indications and guidelines for medical professionals.

Ed Rosenthal

Ed Rosenthal is the world’s leading expert on the cultivation of marijuana. In his more than forty years as the “guru of ganja,” he has written or edited more than a dozen books about marijuana cultivation and social policy that cumulatively have sold over two million copies. His “Ask Ed”® marijuana advice column ran in High Times for several decades and still appears internationally. One of his books on marijuana cultivation is the only book of its type to be reviewed by The New York Times.

Currently Rosenthal consults for commercial growers throughout the world, both independently and as a team member of Quantum 9, a cannabis consulting service. He is also on the faculty of Oaksterdam University, the leading trade school for the cannabis industry. His classes teach pupils how different techniques can be used to improve the yield and efficiency of their gardens.

Beyond the garden, Rosenthal views marijuana law as a crucial social issue and has been active in promoting and developing policies of civil regulation. In 2003 he was tried in federal court for cultivation in a trial where the jury was not allowed to hear that he was deputized by the City of Oakland to provide marijuana for patients. His trial shifted public opinion in favor of state medical marijuana laws. He currently serves as the Executive Director of Green Aid: The Medical Marijuana Legal Defense and Education Fund.  Rosenthal has also served as an expert witness for federal, state, and civil marijuana cases for over thirty years.

Books by Ed Rosenthal include: Protect Your Garden, Marijuana Grower’s Handbook (2010), Marijuana Pest & Disease Control, Medical Marijuana 101, Why Marijuana Should be Legal, and The Big Book of Buds series.

Debby Goldsberry

Debby Goldsberry has 25 years as a leader in the medical and adult use marijuana industry. She co-founded the Berkeley Patients Group (BPG) medical cannabis collective in 1999. Directing its growth over 11 years, with 70 employees and up to 1,000 customer visits per day. At BPG, Ms. Goldsberry developed and implemented standard operating procedures for procurement, product safety, patient relations, and business management and operations, which have been replicated by dispensaries around the nation. As a community leader, she co-founded and directed Americans for Safe Access (ASA), Medical Cannabis Safety Council (MCSC), and Cannabis Action Network (CAN). She is a board member at California NORML, is a former board member of the Marijuana Policy Project, and teaches procurement and patient relations at Oaksterdam University. She has proven experience in business and human resources management, public and government relations, and product development and marketing. Ms. Goldsberry is currently the Ambassador at Magnolia Wellness in Oakland, CA and at Bloom Well in Bend, OR, two model medical cannabis dispensaries.

Guenter Weiglein

Of the legal cannabis users in Germany, three patients have been able to take their cases against the Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices (BfArM) for not allowing them to grow their own plants since the imports are incredibly expensive and not covered by health insurance.

Günther Weiglein is one of the three cannabis patients who the German court allowed the ability to potentially grow his own medicine.

Jamie Shaw

Jamie’s experience in the theatre and film industries saw her take up residence in New York, Toronto, Las Vegas and Los Angeles before locating in Vancouver. She was a Director and spokesperson for the BC Compassion Club Society (BCCCS), and served as President of the Canadian Association of Medical Cannabis Dispensaries (CAMCD). Her successful lobbying for these organizations Dispensary led the city of Vancouver to not only develop bylaws for dispensaries, but to create a separate class of license for compassion clubs like the BCCCS, that requires membership in CAMCD. She co-founded the Women Grow Vancouver Chapter, and is a prolific writer whose work is featured on the websites Canlio, and Lift, and continues to consult, lobby and advocate for dispensaries.

Aaron Smith

Aaron Smith is the co-founder and executive director for the National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA) – the only national trade association representing the social and political interests of legal cannabis businesses in the United States. Founded in 2010 and now representing nearly 1,000 member businesses, NCIA maintains offices in Washington, D.C. and Denver, Colorado.

Prior to launching NCIA, Aaron distinguished himself as a public advocate for common sense marijuana policy reforms — first under the auspices of a California-based medical cannabis advocacy group, Safe Access Now, and later as the California state policy director for the Washington, D.C.-based Marijuana Policy Project. Aaron’s opinion pieces have appeared in major newspapers, including the San Francisco Chronicle, Los Angeles Times, and The New York Times, and he has been a frequent commentator on national television news networks. Originally from the San Francisco Bay Area, Aaron is currently based in Denver, Colorado.

Kirk Tousaw

Kirk Tousaw is a barrister and advocate for law reform. His primary practice areas are Medical Cannabis Regulatory Compliance, Cannabis Criminal Defence and Strategic Litigation.

In addition to the daily practice of law, Kirk advocates for law reform. He sits on the all-volunteer Board of Directors of the British Columbia Civil Liberties Association. He also sits on the Board of NORML Canada, MAPS Canada and the Sensible BC Society. Kirk drafted the Sensible Policing Act, a recent ballot initiative in BC that garnered more than 200,000 signatures.

Kirk has written and spoken extensively on issues related to drug policy, privacy, religious freedom, and criminal justice policy. In addition, Kirk has had the privilege of testifying several times before the Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights of the House of Commons and also before the Senate Standing Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs. In 2015 he litigated the first medical cannabis case to be heard by the Supreme Court of Canada.

Ross Mirkarimi

Ross Mirkarimi was elected the thirty-fifth Sheriff of the City and County of San Francisco, and served until 2016.  Prior to becoming Sheriff, he was elected to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors (City Council) for two terms.  Throughout his 22 years of public service, Ross has been an outspoken advocate for the legalization of cannabis – the only Sheriff in California’s 58 counties.  In 2005, Ross was the first municipal legislator in California to author a comprehensive regulatory framework for legalizing medical cannabis. He received NORML’s “hero of the year” award in 2006. Appointed by the State Senate, Ross also served on the California Costal Commission between 2009-2011.   Since leaving public service, Ross is consulting governments domestic and abroad on criminal justice reforms, and implementation of cannabis regulations.

Susan Audino, PhD

Susan Audino obtained her PhD in Chemistry with an analytical chemistry major, physical and biochemistry minor areas.  Susan was the recipient of NSF Chemometric Graduate Fellowship and was a visiting scientist at NIST where she completed her graduate research.  She currently owns and operates a consulting firm to service chemical and biological laboratories, is an A2LA Lead Assessor and Instructor, and serves as a Board Member for the Center for Research on Environmental Medicine in Maryland.  She is also serving as Quality and/or Technical Director for several laboratories and has worked with a variety of laboratories to establish and/or improve their quality management and technical operations.

Susan has been studying the chemistry and applications of cannabinoids and provides scientific and technical guidance to medical marijuana dispensaries, testing laboratories, medical personnel, and regulatory agencies. Dr. Audino’s interest most directly involves marijuana/cannabis consumer safety and protection, and promotes active research towards the development of official/consensus test methods specifically for this industry. Her perspective is that inadequate testing is worse than no testing.  In addition to serving on Expert Review Panels, she has been working closely with AOAC to develop interest and movement toward the development of scientifically sound methodologies for the cannabis sector, and is chairing the first such AOAC Cannabis Working Group.

Ngaio Bealum

Ngaio Bealum is one of the premiere cannabis comics in the United States and you’ll see why he has performed at just about every Hempfest on the West Coast and too many cannabis-related events to even keep track of. He has appeared on Comedy Central, BET, MTV and many other networks and shows across your television dial.  Very recently, he was a featured guest on the hilarious podcast of Doug Benson (Super High Me, Half-Baked), Getting Doug With High. In addition to his cannabis comedy, he is the former editor of West Coast Cannabis Magazine and has been a tireless activist for legalization. While Ngaio’s comedy is hilarious whether you are a full-fledged member of the cannabis community or not, it certainly doesn’t hurt.

Chris Driessen

Chris Driessen is the President of Organa Brands, the Colorado-based parent company of O.penVAPE, Bakked, District Edibles, Magic Buzz and Organa Labs products. Organa Brands is home to the largest consumer cannabis brands in the United States, with ancillary and CBD products in eight European countries. As President, Driessen is responsible for all aspects of day-to-day operations, corporate strategy and overall performance of the organization.

Driessen’s competitive background managing sales efforts for Starwood Hotels and Resorts allowed him to prepare Organa Brands as an international house of brands. Through intensive sales and brand training with Starwood (and other international hotel enterprises), Driessen understands the necessity for brand development and delivering a unique consumer experience. This background paved the way for Driessen to contribute to O.penVAPE becoming the most widely recognized and globally distributed brand in cannabis.

O.penVAPE’s dramatic revenue growth for the past several years is in part due to Driessen’s ability to lead and motivate his sales teams. With his sales leadership experience with Konica Minolta Business Solutions, one of the largest technology companies with offices in 49 countries worldwide, he brings systematic practices and highly developed organization skills to Organa Brands. He is responsible for tripling the size of Organa Brands’ licensee network within the United States and expanding the company’s international presence into both Europe and the Caribbean. The company revenues have grown 10X under his leadership as both a sales leader and executive.

As President, Driessen drives higher revenue by increasing efficiency and overseeing new product and upcoming brand roll outs in the THC and CBD markets. Chris directs all operations at Organa Labs, the Organa Brands Fulfillment Center and the Organa Brands Corporate Office.

Chris Driessen is committed to industry advocacy, corporate responsibility, scientific research, product innovation and safe access to cannabis.

Charles P. Rutherford II

Charlie is the Business Development Director at Boveda and his personal story is what informs Boveda’s mission in maximizing the quality of cannabis. In 2013 Charlie was hit on his motorcycle by a careless driver, resulting in amputation of his left foot. Desperate for a more effective and safer relief for phantom limb pain than increasing amounts of opiates, Charlie reluctantly turned to cannabis. In one night, he went from skeptic to believer. The quality of life that cannabis provides allows Charlie to compete in golf, mountain biking, downhill skiing and marksmanship. The only difference before and after the accident, he says, is that now he gets much better parking.

Sebastián Marincolo

Sebastián Marincolo is a former student of the philosophers William G. Lycan, Simon Blackburn, and Manfred Frank. His research focuses on the philosophy of mind, neurocognition, and on altered states of mind. Marincolo has published various articles on the marijuana high, co-edited bewusstseinserweiterungen (“mind expansions”), an issue of the German internetzine “parapluie”, and published three books on the marijuana high: the study “High. Insights on Marijuana” (Dogearpublishing, Indiana, USA, 2010), the essay collection, “High. Das positive Potential von Marijuana” (in German, Klett Cotta/Tropen, Stuttgart, Germany, 2013), which contains his macro art series “The Art of Cannabis”, and the essay collection “What Hashish Did To Walter Benjamin” (Khargala Press 2015).

Marincolo also worked with marijuana expert Harvard Associate Prof. Emeritus Lester Grinspoon on a book project. For more than five years he was a creative director and consultant for one of the biggest foundations in Germany and has more than 25 years of experience as a freelance photographer. His art photography from New York City, Rio de Janeiro, Bali and other places has been shown in various exhibitions and art galleries in Germany and the U.S. He is currently living in Stuttgart, Germany, and works as a freelance writer, creative consultant and photographer.

Pavel Kubů, MD

Pavel Kubů is an expert in the fields of medical informatics and addictology.

In 2001, he graduated in general medicine with a focus on disease prevention and public health from the Third Faculty of Medicine, Charles University.

Since 2005 he has been working for the Intel Corporation as a Business Development Manager, leading projects of the Intel World Ahead Programme for Healthcare in Central and Eastern Europe and Education in the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

In 2006 he was appointed as chair of the Ethics Commission at the National Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Addiction.

Pavel has served since 2007 as a board member of the Czech National Forum for eHealth, from 2012 to 2015 as a member of the steering committee of the Czech Healthcare Forum and since 2013 as a board member of the medical cannabis patients’ organisation KOPAC. In these non-profit NGOs he is primarily devoted to the education of healthcare professionals, patients and caregivers and support for the research and development of new treatment and preventive methods.

In 2014 he became a cofounding member of Konomed, a company that focuses on research and development in the field of medical cannabis that was transformed to ICCI – International Cannabis and Cannabinoids Institute in 2016. ICCI founders share combined experience that includes clinical and basic research, direct patient advocacy, legislative efforts and studies, government relations, advisory and administration, medical informatics, the creation of product safety protocols such as quality control / quality assurance standards and laboratory analysis for the cultivation, manufacturing and distribution of cannabis products and global entrepreneurship. Their unique position leverages unparalleled resources and experience to create a global cannabis resource.

Kevin Jodrey

Kevin Jodrey is one of the most well known growers in Humboldt County and is an internationally respected cannabis expert, known for improving and forwarding the modern cannabis movement. As a world renowned hunter of ganja genetics, Kev is fascinated by the search for rare, desirable, and marketable traits.

Kevin is the creator of Port Royal, owner of Wonderland Nursery, and co-founder of The Ganjier. He’s been a cannabis cultivator for decades, running his own operations and offering consulting services to the broader community. He’s spoken at universities, judged at the Emerald Cup, and consulted on cannabis related educational shows for National Geographic and A&E.

Featured in the New York Times, a pulitzer prize winning Washington Post article, countless other articles, books, and radio, and tv shows, he is at the epicenter of the Green Rush (and graces the walls of the Oakland Museum to prove it) and is guiding the industry as it transitions to legalization.

Òscar Parés

Òscar Parés Franquero has degrees in philosophy and anthropology and an MA in drug dependencies from the Barcelona University. He is currently the deputy director of the International Center for Ethnobotanical Education Research & Service Foundation (ICEERS). He is the main author of the Drug Policy Report: Catalonia, Innovation Born of Necessity (OSF, 2015) and co-authored the paper “How to regulate Cannabis Social Clubs: analyzing the experiences in Spain, Belgium and Uruguay” (2017 International Journal of Drug Policy). During 7 years he had collaborated with the Government of Catalonia in coordinating risk reduction programs in the nightlife context and, in the context of the regulation of the activity of Cannabis Social Clubs.

 


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“I don’t feel high or stoned, All I know is I feel better when I take this.” – Ruth Brunn, 98

Ruth Brunn finally said yes to marijuana. She is 98.

She pops a green pill filled with cannabis oil into her mouth with a sip of vitamin water. Then Ms. Brunn, who has neuropathy, settles back in her wheelchair and waits for the jabbing pain in her shoulders, arms and hands to ebb.

“I don’t feel high or stoned,” she said. “All I know is I feel better when I take this.”

Ms. Brunn will soon have company. The nursing home in New York City where she lives, the Hebrew Home at Riverdale, is taking the unusual step of helping its residents use medical marijuana under a new program to treat various illnesses with an alternative to prescription drugs. While the staff will not store or administer pot, residents are allowed to buy it from a dispensary, keep it in locked boxes in their rooms and take it on their own.

From retirement communities to nursing homes, older Americans are increasingly turning to marijuana for relief from aches and pains. Many have embraced it as an alternative to powerful drugs like morphine, saying that marijuana is less addictive, with fewer side effects.

For some people, it is a last resort when nothing else helps.

Marijuana, which is banned by federal law, has been approved for medical use in 29 states, including New York, and the District of Columbia. Accumulating scientific evidence has shown its effectiveness in treating certain medical conditions. Among them: neuropathic pain, severe muscle spasms associated with multiple sclerosis, unintentional weight loss, and vomiting and nausea from chemotherapy. There have also been reports that pot has helped people with Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia as well as Parkinson’s disease.Across the nation, the number of marijuana users who are in their later years is still relatively limited, but the increase has been significant, especially among those 65 and older, according to recent studies.

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Marcia Dunetz, 80, said that she worried at first about what people would think. “It’s got a stigma,” she said. “People don’t really believe you’re not really getting high if you take it.”CreditPhotographs by Yana Paskova for The New York Times

“It’s a bigger issue than we thought,” said Brian Kaskie, a professor of health policy at the University of Iowa who co-wrote a study published in January, “The Increasing Use of Cannabis Among Older Americans: A Public Health Crisis or Viable Policy Alternative?” “This is an elephant we’re just starting to get our hands on.”

A medical marijuana education and support club started by residents of Rossmoor Walnut Creek, a retirement community east of San Francisco, has grown to 530 members — so many that it has changed meeting rooms three times.

“I would be in a lot worse shape if I wasn’t using cannabis, both physically and mentally,” said Anita Mataraso, 72, a grandmother of six who is the program director and takes marijuana daily for arthritis and nerve pain, among other ailments.

In the state of Washington, at least a dozen assisted living facilities have formal medical marijuana policies in response to demands from their residents, said Robin Dale, the executive director of the Washington Health Care Association. The association, an industry group, has posted a sample medical marijuana policy on its website.

In March, an influential group of medical providers, AMDA — The Society for Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine, will tackle the issue at its annual conference. Cari Levy, the group’s vice president, will offer a “Marijuana 101” lesson on the benefits, the risks and the potential pitfalls for providers.

“People are using it, and we need know how to respond,” she said.

But as older people come to represent an emerging frontier in the use of marijuana for medical purposes, questions are being raised about safety and accessibility. Even in states where medical marijuana is legal, older people who stand to benefit often cannot get it. Most nursing homes do not openly sanction its use, and many doctors are reluctant to endorse pot use, saying not enough is known about the risks in the oldest age groups.

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The president and chief executive of RiverSpring Health, Daniel Reingold. He said he administered marijuana to his father as a painkiller shortly before his death.

CreditYana Paskova for The New York Times

“This is a target demographic that may have their access limited, if not cut off altogether, simply because they reside in a facility,” said Paul Armentano, deputy director of NORML, a group that advocates the legalization of marijuana. “It is a problem that may infringe on their quality of life.”

While there is no shortage of research on marijuana, relatively little of it has focused explicitly on older users even as their numbers grow — and not just in the United States. In Israel, for instance, older people have been treated with medical marijuana for years. And Americans for Safe Access, an advocacy group, helped open a research center in the Czech Republic that is evaluating its impact on older people.

“It’s an area that’s very important to look at,” said Dr. Igor Grant, the director of the Center for Medicinal Cannabis Research at the University of California, San Diego, adding that older people are now one of the center’s research priorities.

“Older people can be more sensitive to medicine,” he said. “It’s possible a dose safe for a 40-year-old may not be in an 80-year-old.”

Dr. Thomas Strouse, a psychiatrist and palliative care doctor at the University of California, Los Angeles, said that just as sleeping and pain medications could harm older people, marijuana could possibly make them confused, dizzy or more likely to fall.

“There is no evidence that it is particularly helpful to older people, and some reason that it could be harmful,” he said.

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Medical marijuana is kept in a safe in Marcia Dunetz’s room at the Hebrew Home at Riverdale. CreditYana Paskova for The New York Times

Most nursing homes have also taken a cautious position, often resorting to a “don’t ask, don’t tell” approach.

“If residents are taking it, they are taking it undercover without the staff knowing so it’s not part of their care plan,” said Dr. Cheryl Phillips, senior vice president for public policy and health services for LeadingAge, an industry group representing more than 2,000 nursing homes. “I think that creates a safety problem.”

Fred Miles, a Colorado lawyer who represents nursing home operators, said nursing homes — unlike assisted living facilities — were regulated by the federal government, and were fearful of jeopardizing their Medicare and Medicaid funding. Staff members who administer marijuana could also theoretically face criminal prosecution under federal law, he said, though he has never heard of that happening.

At the Hebrew Home in the Bronx, the medical marijuana program was years in the making. Daniel Reingold, the president and chief executive of RiverSpring Health, which operates the home, said he saw its powers firsthand when his own father, Jacob, was dying from cancer in 1999. To ease his father’s pain, Mr. Reingold boiled marijuana into a murky brown tea. His father loved it, and was soon laughing and eating again.

“The only relief he got in those last two weeks was the tea,” Mr. Reingold said.

When Mr. Reingold requested approval from the nursing home’s board members, there were no objections or concerns, he said. Instead, they joked that they would have to increase the food budget.

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Hillary Peckham, of the medical marijuana dispensary Etain Health, showing an array of marijuana tincture, capsules and vaporizer cartridges. CreditYana Paskova for The New York Times

Then Dr. Zachary Palace, the medical director, developed a program that seeks to offer marijuana as an option but also comply with federal regulations: Though the nursing home recommends and monitors its use, residents are responsible for buying, storing and administering it themselves.

Last fall, the first three residents started taking marijuana pills. Their families obtain the pills at a dispensary in Yonkers run by Etain, a company licensed by the state to sell medical marijuana to qualifying patients or their designated caregivers, who must live in New York. Dr. Palace said that as the program expanded this month, as many as 50 residents could be using marijuana.

Marcia Dunetz, 80, a retired art teacher who has Parkinson’s, said she worried at first about what people would think. “It’s got a stigma,” she said. “People don’t really believe you’re not really getting high if you take it.”

But she decided to try it anyway. Now, she no longer wakes up with headaches and feels less dizzy and nauseated. Her legs also do not freeze up as often.

For Ms. Brunn, the marijuana pills have worked so well that she has cut back on her other pain medication, morphine.

Her daughter, Faith Holman, 61, said the pills cost $240 a month, which is not covered by health insurance. Ms. Holman, who lives in New Jersey, also has to ask a family friend to go to the Yonkers dispensary.

“Obstacles had to be overcome,” Ms. Holman said. “But I think she was meant to have it because everything has worked out.”


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Here’s Everything You Need to Know About Germany’s New Weed Laws

Germany just passed one of the world’s most progressive medical marijuana plans. The new law will put weed in more pharmacies and require public insurers to cover the costs of cannabis products, as they do other pharmaceutical prescriptions, when cannabis is prescribed for “severe conditions.”

Germany will also start growing its own weed. This will replace the old medical marijuana law, which granted permits for people to grow their own. So recreational growers will not have any excuses for ‘exotic houseplants.’

The drug dealers of Berlin’s infamous open-air marijuana market in Görlitzer Park that spoke to Highsnobiety were surprisingly supportive. “Obviously its not going to be so good for business, but it’s the right thing to do if it can help people,” said Jan*, 24. Like many of the dealers lining in the parks of Berlin, he is an African immigrant, this time from Lagos.

While Germany is standardizing its medical marijuana supply chain, authorities in the capital turn a blind eye to illicit dealers selling dime bags in public spaces. But although it will soon be easier to get free weed from the local pharmacy, most dealers we spoke to were not threatened by the competition.

“We also get people who buy weed from us to treat pain,” said Menis*, 27, a Gambian dealer.  “Some don’t come anymore, but a lot of them still do. You don’t get exactly the same experience from the pharmacy products as you do with the marijuana we sell. They spray it with something different. I didn’t like it as much.”

Currently pharmacy prices for medical marijuana fluctuate from 12 to 20 euro per gram, compared to the roughly 10-euro price in the park.

Who Stands to Lose from Medical Marijuana

If data from the United States’ research on the effects of medical marijuana is an indicator of how things could play out in Germany, there might be a reason drug dealers are so chill about the new law: pharmaceutical companies stand to loose more customers.

There is clear difference between annual drug doses prescribed by physicians in medical marijuana states, and in states where weed is completely illegal, according to a 2015 study. There were 1,826 fewer painkiller doses prescribed, followed by 562 fewer anxiety medications and 541 fewer pharmaceutical nausea treatments prescribed in states where patients could be treated with cannabis.

The U.S. National Bureau of Economic Research also found that legal access to medical marijuana is linked to a significant drop in the number of people abusing and dying from prescription painkillers.

This could catch on in Germany as Germans have already started turning away from traditional pharmaceuticals to more natural products. Over half the population has used some form of homeopathic treatment, with awareness and use of alternative drugs rising steadily since their introduction to pharmacies in 1976.

Germany Is Not California

It is no secret that California’s medical marijuana dispensary program has relatively lax requirements to determine who could benefit from a medical marijuana card, which are often used for recreational smoking rather than strictly for treatment of an illness. More than 91,000 medical marijuana cards have been issued since 2004, according to California’s Department of Public Health.

“Germany has much stricter guidelines than California for prescribing marijuana,” said Goerg Wurth, head of the German Hemp association. “Almost anyone who wants a prescription can get one there. In Germany things are more regulated and bureaucratic. Doctors are checking to make sure medical marijuana is not used for recreational purposes.”

There are roughly 30 illnesses for which the German government recommends cannabis, ranging from chronic pain to attention deficit disorder and epilepsy. But even after getting the green light from a doctor to use marijuana, the German system is more regimented than the dispensary model.

Instead of setting up new businesses that deal exclusively in weed, Germans must go through pharmacies. And while doctors can prescribe cannabis for a broad range of ailments, only those that prove to be “severe” will receive reimbursement from public insurers. Doctors also have more sway over what kind of cannabis you can get.

“Although you can get smoking and edible options, it is more likely doctors will suggest vaporizers or THC drops, which are less harmful and easier to dose,” Wurth said.

Where Does Germany Stand Compared to Its Neighbors?

Germany stands somewhere in the middle when it comes to European weed legislation. While some of its neighbors have yet to broach the subject of medical marijuana in parliament, others such as the Netherlands and Spain have certain cities where recreational consumption is legal.

Although many European states have medical marijuana available, Germany will join the Netherlands, Italy and the Czech Republic as the one of the only countries where weed is produced.

“There is more movement for weed legalization than ever before in the world, and it won’t be long until the first European country fully legalizes it,” Wurth said.

Recreational Smoking Is Still Illegal

Despite creating easy access to medial marijuana, the government has been clear in saying that this law is not to be taken as a step towards legalization of recreational use. The government cites health concerns as the main reason for keeping weed from the general public.

“International studies from the last 10 years show that the use and abuse of cannabis can be associated with a number of serious short-term and long-term risks, particularly among young people,” the German Health Ministry said.  “Psychological and psychosocial disorders (such as schizophrenic psychoses), organ-medical effects (such as cardiovascular diseases) and neuro-cognitive impairments (such as the impairment of learning attention and memory functions) are mentioned.”

Still, those pushing for blanket legalization see the new law as a possible step towards it, looking to countries such as the United States and Canada which progressed to legalization after introduced medical marijuana. Eight states recently legalized marijuana in the U.S., whereas Canada introduced legislation to legalize marijuana throughout the whole country this spring.

“I believe that medical marijuana will relax the attitudes of Germans towards cannabis, especially the older, more conservative generation,” Wurth said. “The decision to legalize it for medical purposes was more or less unanimous, whereas the majority of Germans still don’t think it should be legal for recreational use.”

The latest European Drug Report found that nearly a quarter of Germans have tried marijuana.

Germany may lack the political will for blanket legalization, but there are many initiatives and local governments willing to give it a shot. Groups in Berlin, for example, have expressed an interest in the city being a testing site for possible legalization to see whether a change in law could lead to decreases in crime.

“It will eventually become legal in Germany,” Wurth said. “But for it is good that we are taking care of patients.”

On the topic of legalizing weed, here’s our look at what Portland is like two years after weed was legalized

 

http://www.highsnobiety.com/2017/02/17/germany-marijuana-laws/


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German Government Recognizes Quantum 9’s Cannabis Expertise

German Government Recognizes Quantum 9’s Cannabis Expertise

After engaging Quantum 9, Inc. to learn more about the global cannabis environment, the German Federal Ministry of Health has written a letter of recommendation acknowledging the expertise with which Quantum 9 was able to help their queries. The information received provided guidance on drug policy, in favor of cannabis regulation, allowing the drafting of a bill including a cannabis tax.

Letter of Recommendation_German Government

Quantum 9, Inc. is honored to be considered by the German government for such a project, and has been lucky enough to work with several government entities in similar projects.