Major US Doctors' Group Backs Medical Marijuana

Medical association calls for law change to reclassify pot
By Laurel Jorgensen,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 15, 2008 3:15 AM CST
Major US Doctors' Group Backs Medical Marijuana
Pro-medical marijuana activists demonstrate in downtown Los Angeles, on Thursday Oct.11, 2007. About 200 activists gathered today outside Gov. Schwarzenegger's office demanding he do more to end federal raids on cannabis clinics. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel)   (Associated Press)

The second-largest physicians' organization in the nation is taking a stand supporting medical marijuana, declaring that science has proven the drug has therapeutic value. The American College of Physicians is asking federal lawmakers to drop marijuana from a category of drugs considered to have no medicinal value, the Los Angeles Times reports. In a position paper, the association also calls for the protection of doctors and patients in states with laws supporting pot use for health reasons.

The Bush administration has aggressively rebuffed any such moves. “We’d like to clear up the uncertainty and anxiety of patients and physicians over this drug,” said the organization's president. The association's document also calls for research to identify illnesses best treated with pot and to determine proper dosages. A medical-marijuana advocate called the new position "an earthquake that’s going to rattle the whole medical-marijuana issue.” Marijuana is often used to increase appetite and quell nausea. (Read more medical marijuana stories.)

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