The opioid crisis is boiling over – not only in its ever-growing medical, familial, societal toll of all the deaths and other tragic impacts of dependency – but now including allegations of political and criminal malfeasance involving actors in a number of high places who may have contributed to making things worse taking center stage.

We’ll be sharing a number of stories about these in the next several days. The developments include breaking news reports on multiple emerging scandals, including allegations involving how members of Congress, the DEA, pharmaceutical companies, and a number of doctors may have contributed to the epidemic.

As focal point, we begin, however, with yesterday’s declaration of a “public health care emergency” by President Trump as reported by Americans for Safe Access (ASA) which frames both the overall crisis, and why medical cannabis – although being ignored by many involved in formulating and carrying out policy – promises to be a key element in any plan with the best odds of success….


“While this is good news, this declaration does not carry the same weight as the national emergency declaration the President promised in August because it does not include the necessary provisions for new funds which states need. Nor does the Administration have a substantive plan for helping the states implement a concerted effort to combat the crisis.

‘We are glad that the President is finally formally recognizing that our country is indeed in a crisis,’ stated Steph Sherer, Executive Director of ASA.

‘However, he failed to address the fact that one in three Americans suffer from chronic pain and one in ten have experienced severe pain every day for three months or more.

The shortfalls in funding mean it is more important than ever that Congress ensures states can continue to run medical cannabis programs…

States with medical cannabis programs are seeing reductions in opioid-related deaths of up to 25%, and without action from Congress this year, AG Sessions could have free reign to interrupt these life-saving programs. The Administration and lawmakers need to stop ignoring the glaring evidence that medical cannabis is an important tool in addressing the opioid crisis’.”

More in the article.

The NY Times coverage also noties that until there is actual follow-up the declaration seems mostly symbolic and doesn’t commit any actual new resources to the effort. And as we’ve noted, we see few signs that the Administration “gets” the nature of the crisis or that it understands much of anything about the value of medical cannabis.

“To combat the epidemic, the president said the government would produce ‘really tough, really big, really great advertising’ aimed at persuading Americans not to start using opioids in the first place, seeming to hark back to the ‘Just Say No’ anti-drug campaign led by Nancy Reagan in the 1980s.”

….Because that worked so well…. (including a useful video summary).

#MMJ #Opioids #Emergency #USpol #Congress #DEA #Insys #ASA #TRUCE    

See full article – Trump Declares Opioid Crisis a Public Health Emergency, but Falls Short on Substance