HARTFORD, Conn. – It might not be an all out cure for the opioid epidemic, but it could put a small dent in the numbers.
Two recent studies have shown that medical marijuana states have less opioids.
Dr. Bill Zempsky with the Connecticut Children’s Medical Center said, “Those states, pre-and post, before they had medical marijuana and after, had less opioid prescribing, if they implemented a medical marijuana program.”
Dr. Bill Zempsky is in charge of pain management at CCMC. He says there may be some downsides with medical marijuana, but that it has shown to curb opioids.
Christina Capitan with Prime Wellness of Connecticut added, “We have seen an exponential growth in this program and we expect to see it grow even further.”
There are currently more than 25,000 people enrolled in the Connecticut Medical Marijuana Program.
Capitan said, “The program is really successful so the patient base is growing so we really are having a hard time keeping up with demand, currently. But a lot of people get success with the program or it wouldn’t be as big as it is.”
There have been more than 3,000 overdoses since the beginning of the year, and those are the ones that just made it to the hospitals. It is taking its toll on the medical community, on the community itself, as well as on the police departments because of the crime that goes with it.
Craig Allen is the Medical Director at The Rushford. He says the numbers can help track trends and spot deadly new drugs on the market. The numbers are scientific, and they are good measuring stick.
“Why do I think about these newest numbers? They are scary, they are frightening, and it makes me mad, but I think we need to channel our anger and channel our energy,” Dr. Allen explained.
Do you think medical marijuana could help curb this epidemic? Let us know in the comments below.