New York to allow medical marijuana as substitute to opioids

Report from NY health officials calls for marijuana legalization

"The positive effects of a regulated marijuana market in NYS outweigh the potential negative impacts", the report reads.

"We are pleased that the Governor and the State Department of Health have fully studied the existing evidence and accurately concluded that legalizing marijuana for adult use is the right choice for NY", policy coordinator for the Drug Policy Alliance, Chris Alexander said in a statement. It suggests the state could raise almost $700 million in tax revenue off the drug, and that legalization won't significantly increase rates of marijuana use by adults or teens. "Areas that may be a cause for concern can be mitigated with regulation and proper use of public education that is tailored to address key populations", the report says in conclusion.

In an effort to reduce opioid abuse in the state, NY is allowing the use of medical marijuana as a replacement for opioid.

Report from NY health officials calls for marijuana legalization
New York Lets Patients Choose Medical Marijuana Instead Of Opioids

The report represents a big change for Cuomo, who past year called marijuana a "gateway drug" to more harmful substances.

Plans to add opioid replacement as a qualifying condition for medical marijuana were first announced in June, under Bill S8987A. The last-minute change was supported by groups representing doctors, hospitals and pharmacists who opposed medical marijuana, but infuriated supporters of the state question.

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