Since the introduction of the Utah Ballot Initiative, many opponents have rallied around the factoid that cannabis in its full natural molecular structure is “not an FDA approved drug.”
The FDA has spent decades burnishing its reputation as the arbiter of what “medicines” are safe and effective, even as the drug industry it oversees has become one of the largest in the world.
But is the FDA a) truly free of conflicts of interest, and b) is the current drug company/paid clinical trials model the only valid (or even best) route to discovering and introducing new “safe and effective medicines”?
(And yes, as advocates for patients first and foremost, we care about by sound science and protecting the public’s health as deeply as anyone.)
A variant is the UMA’s bald assertion that “Plants aren’t medicines,” raising the (historical and current) question of just what is or isn’t a “medicine.”
With legal medical cannabis achieving high patient and doctor satisfaction rates in most of the US, many scientists (and TRUCE, which has been learning along with you) have begun taking a fresh look.
These are complex issues, so no one post or even 10 or 20 can answer the questions raised. But if these are the grounds voters are going to be asked to decide on about whether Utah’s doctors and patients should to have the right to recommend and use MC, they deserve serious exploration.
We begin with a paper from the Harvard Center for Ethics written in 2013. It’s about what seem rather large and risky deficits in the FDA’s current model based, documenting how the agency’s process has clearly been benefitting pharma companies, but possibly at the expense of the public’s optimal health.
That is, the article raises real questions about whether the FDA always acts in the spirit of the Hippocratic oath which underlies the whole idea of modern medicine, beginning with “First, do no harm.”
“[Over the last 30 years many] approved drugs have caused an epidemic of side effects, even when properly prescribed. Every week, about 53,000 excess hospitalizations and about 2400 excess deaths occur in the US among people taking properly prescribed drugs to be healthier.
One in every five drugs [newly] approved ends up causing serious harm, while [only] one in ten provide substantial benefit compared to existing, established drugs.
Prescription drugs are the 4th leading cause of death. This is the opposite of what people want or expect from the FDA.”
We urge you to read on… …and to keep an open mind as we look at other aspects of these questions, as well as continuing our regular coverage of the increasingly wide world of medical cannabis.
#MMJ #FDA #Ethics #Risk #UTpol #PlantBasedMedicine #UtahNext #TRUCE
See full article – Risky Drugs: Why The FDA Cannot Be Trusted