Study: Legal Medical Cannabis Could Save Up To 50,000 Lives Annually
The following medical findings are US-based but are still extremely relevant to us here in Canada.
A [US] new study has found that if medical cannabis were to be legalized nationally, up to 50,000 human lives could be saved a year
The study, undertaken by the University of Indiana, authored by Dr. Thomas M. Clark, looked at previous research and evaluated how more medical cannabis could save lives in America.
The researchers mission statement for the study read, “The effects of Cannabis use on mortality from effects on organ systems and disease states considered most likely to be influenced by Cannabis were investigated. These were cancer, appetite and metabolism, cardiovascular disease, liver disease, lung disease, and brain injury.”
The study then looked at how legalization could impact patients, from the effects of Obesity, Cancer, Cardiovascular disease, Lung disease and a host of other common conditions. that said, the prohibition laws relating to cannabis in many states in fact contribute to an estimated 6,100 to 9,000 deaths annually.
The other interesting side to this research is another study, from April of this year, which found that in the eventuality that all states of America legalized cannabis, the taxpayer would save in excess of a million dollars annually, as people switch from expensive and addictive medications like opioids, to medical cannabis.
That study, published in the journal Health Affairs, out of the University of Georgia, compared Medicaid prescription spending to what it would cost if cannabis were legal in all states.
David Bradford and master’s student Ashley Bradford, wrote that the findings “suggest that patients and physicians in the community are reacting to the availability of medical marijuana as if it were medicine.”
It remains to be seen how much notice will be taken of this study. What is clear is the fact that legal medical cannabis could be just the impetus needed to save thousands of lives a year, and that’s not to mention millions of dollars.