Medicalization

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Feds jail elderly medical cannabis caregiver

Localização: 
San Francisco, CA
United States
Publication/Source: 
Fog City Journal (San Francisco, CA)
URL: 
http://www.fogcityjournal.com/news_in_brief/landa_press_conf_070104.shtml

Debate Over Afghan Opium Medicalization Coming to Washington

The pressure to medicalize poppy cultivation in Afghanistan won't go away. The idea continues to find new proponents because it sounds considerably less absurd than asking Afghan families to give up on feeding themselves.

From the St. Louis Post-Dispatch:

After a year of escalating Afghan heroin production, calls are mounting for a shift in U.S. policy aimed at turning Afghanistan's poppy into an economic asset by using it to produce medicinal painkillers.

Backers of the proposal include several leading scientists and economists, as well as some in Congress.


"You can't just cut off the poppies because that's the livelihood of the people who live there," [Rep. Russ] Carnahan said Thursday. "But providing them with alternative legal markets for pain-relief medication is a way to help cut back on that heroin supply."

Congratulations, Russ Carnahan! You solved the riddle. Extra points if you can dumb this down enough to explain it to the drug policy experts at the State Department.

Tom Schweich, a senior State Department official who is spearheading U.S. efforts to curb Afghan narcotics, said he welcomed "creative ideas" but found this one to be unrealistic.

He said Afghan farmers wouldn't have enough economic incentive to turn away from illegal poppy cultivation. He added that Afghanistan lacks the required business infrastructure for processing, manufacturing and distribution, and that the oversight needed to prevent illicit drug trafficking would be near impossible.

Ok, we're listening. Yes, it's complicated situation. So what do you propose?

"You really need to keep it illegal and eradicate it," Schweich said.

Darn, he blew it. For a second there I thought he understood something.

Schweich rattles off a list of reasons why eradication won't work and then, like some sort of involuntary reflex, spontaneously proposes eradication. He sees all the reasons eradication won't work, but he cites them as arguments against Carnahan's plan rather than his own. Such rank incompetence might be funny if the fate of a nation weren't hanging in the balance.

Localização: 
United States

Prescription Heroin Brings Ethical Dilemma

Localização: 
Vancouver, BC
Canada
Publication/Source: 
Inter Press Service News Agency
URL: 
http://www.ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=35648

Press Release: Salt Lake City Conference Confronts the Meth Crisis

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 29, 2006 PRESS CONTACT: Luciano Colonna, 801-635-7736 SALT LAKE CITY CONFERENCE CONFRONTS THE METH CRISIS: National Conference brings all sides together to address the realities of methamphetamine use in America SALT LAKE CITY: In conjunction with National Methamphetamine Awareness Day and in response to the public’s demand for solutions to the dangers of meth use, the Harm Reduction Project announces the 2nd National Conference on Methamphetamine, HIV, and Hepatitis to be held in Salt Lake City, Utah, February 1-3, 2007. “We congratulate our nation’s forward thinking leaders for recognizing that methamphetamine is impacting our families and communities”, says Luciano Colanna Executive Director of the Harm Reduction Project. “We encourage them to attend the conference and bring their perspective to the table.” The Conference introduces the latest in meth research and response and addresses the complex issues surrounding methamphetamine use in America. Experts from prevention, treatment, public health, social services, law enforcement, and government will discuss topics, such as meth’s affect on child welfare, new treatment research and programs, innovations in criminal justice, and how rural communities are responding to methamphetamine. The 2nd National Conference draws on the expertise of people from small and large communities working in the U.S., as well as the international community. Participants come from as far away as Nepal, and speakers represent the best and latest research in their fields. “By presenting a wide spectrum of responses to methamphetamine use, the Conference provides a unique venue for creating solutions to one of America’s most pressing issues. “If we are going to bring about real change and help families, and communities dealing with meth, we have to have everyone at the table. We can’t afford to rely on one way of thinking to deal with a drug like meth. It simply won’t work.” The Harm Reduction Project is based in Salt Lake City, Utah with offices in Denver, CO and Washington, DC. HRP provides critical health and self-care services to drug using populations, and uses research developed from client interactions to inform public policy. More information on methamphetamine and the 2nd National Conference can be found at http://www.methconference.org ###
Localização: 
United States

Europe: Give Addicts Prescription Heroin, Says British Police Commander

Heroin addicts should be prescribed the drug through the National Health Service (NHS) to reduce crime, a senior British police officer told a conference of the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) this week. The forthright advice came from Nottinghamshire Police Deputy Chief Constable Howard Roberts, who is vice-chairman of the ACPO drugs committee.

The remarks came as ACPO considers whether to seek changes in British drug policy and amidst news reports that some 150 heroin addicts are already receiving prescription diamorphine (heroin) from NHS. Roberts made clear he was expressing his personal opinion, not speaking for ACPO.

"We should actively consider prescribing diamorphine, pharmaceutical heroin, to those seriously addicted to heroin as part of a treatment program for addiction," he said in comments reported by ITV News. "My motives for making such a statement are frankly this: there is an undeniable link between addicted offenders and appalling levels of criminality, as heroin and crack cocaine addicts commit crime from burglary to robbery, to sometimes murder, to get the money to buy drugs to satisfy their addiction. The resulting misery to society is huge."

According to the Home Office, heroin addicts commit 432 crimes a year, Roberts noted. "Therefore the logic is clear, I suggest, that we take highly addicted offenders out of committing crime to feed their addiction, into closely supervised treatment programs that, as part of the program, can prescribe diamorphine," said Roberts.

Roberts' comments won the immediate support of the think tank DrugScope, whose chief executive, Martin Barnes, said: "We support calls for the extension of heroin prescribing, which for some problem drug users can be an extremely effective form of drug treatment. It can have immediate health benefits for the drug user and can for some be the best route to becoming drug-free. There is compelling evidence that heroin prescribing, although more expensive than some forms of drug treatment, is cost-effective in reducing drug-related crime and other costs to communities."

But there is no word yet on whether the British government or the ACPO will be as enthusiastic.

Hardened addicts given free heroin in secret NHS trial (The Times, UK)

Localização: 
United States
URL: 
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2-2466584.html

Medical marijuana question passes (Bedford Minuteman, MA)

Localização: 
United States
URL: 
http://www2.townonline.com/bedford/localRegional/view.bg?articleid=615503

Judge rejects San Diego challenge to medical marijuana law (The Mercury News, CA)

Localização: 
United States
URL: 
http://www.mercurynews.com/mld/mercurynews/news/local/states/california/northern_california/16029249.htm

Make a drug deal with Afghanistan (Los Angeles Times)

Localização: 
United States
URL: 
http://www.latimes.com/news/printedition/opinion/la-oe-hari6nov06,1,3480643.story?ctrack=1&cset=true

You Can’t Spell ‘Potential’ Without Pot

They said marijuana causes cancer, but now we’ve learned that THC may prevent it.

They said marijuana makes you forgetful, but it turns out that it might prevent Alzheimer’s too.

They said marijuana makes you sterile, but today I learned that it can increase fertility.

From Medical News Today:

This study involved eight volunteers - they were all heavy [tobacco] smokers. Four of them had normal sperm function, while the other four had reduced sperm function. Some of their sperm was washed in a regular medium and some was washed in a low-concentration cannabinoid solution.

They found that the sperm of the smokers who had reduced sperm function improved significantly after being washed in the low-concentration cannabinoid solution, while the sperm of the smokers with normal function did not.

Every time they study it, marijuana accomplishes something new and amazing. That’s probably where they got the idea to wash sperm with it. Right now I bet scientists are putting cannabinoid solution on all sorts of things to see what happens.

But the question remains: if you wash your sperm in cannabinoids will your baby be born a hippy?

Localização: 
United States

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