Recently, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”) published a notice in the Federal Register asking stakeholders like patients, their families or caregivers as well as health workers to request to participate in conversations about the alternatives to the use of opioids in chronic pain management. These meetings will help to educate the federal government about how marijuana and other alternative treatments can be helpful in managing or treating pain.
In response to the notice, Americans for Safe Access, through its staffer Heather Despres, has written to the CDC requesting to get an individual session during one of those meetings which are expected to last between 45 and 60 minutes.
Americans for Safe Access is a nonprofit which has been advocating for access to medical marijuana since 2002. Despres wants to be selected for one of the 100 planned sessions so that she can talk about pain management from a personal as well as from a professional perspective.
On a personal level, she says she developed chronic pain as a result of pregnancy-related complications as well as from a broken leg she suffered. She reveals that she has been using medical marijuana to deal with this pain on days when it isn’t so intense, then she uses prescription opioids on those days when the pain is severe. Medical marijuana has therefore helped her to use fewer prescription opioids while maintaining a better quality of life.
Professionally, Despres says she interacts with patients on a daily basis and these patients share how marijuana has been instrumental in helping them to manage the pain they suffer from. In some cases, medical marijuana was the only option that could bring any relief.
Heather Despres therefore looks forward to being given an opportunity to share these experiences with the federal officials in the conversations to be hosted. She also calls upon patients, caregivers and other stakeholders to write expressing their interest in sharing their stories with the CDC so that the federal agency can have extensive stakeholder input while formulating policies on how chronic pain can be managed without making the current opioid crisis worse than it already is. Interested parties have until Friday to submit their request for participation in the planned meetings.
This isn’t the first time that the federal agency is seeking public input on pain management. The CDC’s injury prevention and control center previously asked for stakeholder input on their preferred method of pain management and they received more than a thousand comments on marijuana and kratom.
It is highly likely that cannabis companies like Cannabis Global Inc. (OTC: CBGL) will be following the decisions that the CDC makes after receiving the public input the agency has called for.
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