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Letter on cannabis misleading

Published: Wednesday, April 6, 2016 11:26 a.m. CDT

My wife, Deb, suffers with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome. I’m offended Jennifer Wheeler Husmann is misleading the public. In Husmann’s recent letter “Drug prevention a priority to Kelley,” Husmann shares that Rep. Dan Kelley has studied the “marijuana issue.” I would like to set the record straight and shed light on those misleading statements.

Kelley stated he wants to wait for the FDA. We don’t have the luxury of waiting for something to happen because she endures unimaginable suffering from a high-risk disease every single day — 23-plus states have passed laws with regard to its manufacture and usage and there have been no issues.

Husmann has shared incorrect information. First, she suggests we are headed down a slippery slope of youth marijuana use, extensive research proves otherwise. Of the 17 states with before-and-after data on teen cannabis use, 13 states show an overall decrease and there has been no increase in any state. By saying Kelley is looking out for everyone’s children then he, and Husmann, must be very unfamiliar with the thousands of children in Iowa who need this medication.

Also, Husmann shared a pharmaceutical grade CBD oil will be available in pharmacies in 2017 to be prescribed for other medical conditions. That information is untrue. It is unknown if/when the FDA will approve it.

I continue to hear discussions about CBD use, but the public (and Legislature) needs to understand that cannabis is an effective medicine. Cannabis for medical purposes produces no high and has zero recreational benefit.

Husmann quoted, “[Rep. Kelley] knows he has not had any medical training and so should not be making decisions on whether a potential medicine is safe and effective or who should get it.” It sounds like that is exactly what he is doing, by proclaiming to my wife and the roughly 500,000 other suffering Iowans that Epidiolex, or other “traditional” treatments, will work while denying the opportunity for Iowans to use medical cannabis with their doctor’s recommendation.

We are not asking to be judged, treated as criminals nor do we ask our legislators to determine the efficacy and the science behind medical cannabis. Iowans are simply asking for the ability to possess and use this medication for debilitating medical conditions through a safe, regulated process when recommended by their doctor. Leave our medical decisions to those who know what they are doing. Neither Kelley or Husmann are experts in this field and they shouldn’t pretend to be.

Craig Miller

West Des Moines

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