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Colorado Gov. Signs Bill Allowing MMJ Use for PTSD

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper has signed a bill granting individuals with post-traumatic stress disorder access to medical cannabis under the state program, according to a report from the ABC7. Colorado is the 21st state, along with Washington, D.C. and two U.S. territories, to allow medical cannabis treatments for PTSD.

The state Board of Health had previously denied adding PTSD to the medical cannabis qualifying condition list four times. The condition is the 10th to be added to the regime.

The Colorado Department of Public Health has been researching medical cannabis treatments for PTSD; one such study by the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies is being funded with a $2.156 million grant from the Public Health Department. That randomized, triple-blind, placebo-controlled study involves 76 U.S. military veterans. The MAPS study has been approved by the Drug Enforcement Agency and the Food and Drug Administration. In all, the state has earmarked $3.3 million for various medical cannabis studies.

In their final protocol study, MAPS estimates that 18 percent of Operation Iraqi Freedom veterans suffer from PTSD and another 75,000 to 225,000 service members will return from duty with symptoms.

In September, the American Legion’s Committee on Veterans Affairs & Rehabilitation called on the DEA to “license privately-funded medical marijuana operations” and reschedule the drug in order to increase access for veterans who are denied medical cannabis program access by federal Veterans Administration hospitals. In the resolution, the committee indicated they believe that medical cannabis is a viable therapy for treating PTSD and traumatic brain injury.

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