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More Doctors Should Recommend Cannabis To Cancer Patients According To Israeli Study


Israel MarijuanaBy Steve Elliott of Toke of the Town

More than two-thirds of cancer patients who were prescribed medical marijuana to combat pain are satisfied with the treatment, according to a comprehensive new study from Israel.

The study involved 264 cancer patients who were treated with medical marijuana for a full year, reports Dan Even at Haaretz. The research was conducted at Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer, in conjunction with the Israeli Cancer Association.

About 61 percent of the patients reported a significant improvement in their quality of life as a result of the medical marijuana, while 56 percent noting an improvement in their ability to manage pain. Two-third — 67 percent — were in favor of the treatment, and 65 percent said they would recommend it to other patients.

The findings were presented this month at an Israeli Oncologists Union conference in Eilat, Israel. The study was led by Dr. Ilo Wolf, director of oncology at the Sheba Cancer Center, with the assistance of researchers Yasmin Leshem, Damien Urbach, Adato Berliz, Tamar Ben Ephraim and Meital Gerty.

The most common types of cancer for which medical marijuana is prescribed are lung cancer (21 percent), breast cancer (12 percent) and pancreatic cancer (10 percent), according to the study.

Researchers found that an average of 325 days passed between the time that patients were diagnosed with cancer and the time that they submitted permit requests to grow or possess medical marijuana. About 81 percent of those requests cited pain resulting from the illness. Some 8 percent of patients requested medicinal cannabis to combat nausea, while another 8 percent complained of weakness.

But most cancer patients currently being treated with medical marijuana in Israel are advised of that option only in the advanced stages of the illness, according to the researchers.

“The treatment should be offered to the patients in earlier stages of cancer,” the report notes.

According to the study, 39 percent of respondents were initially advised of the treatment by friends, other patients, or the media, rather than by their doctors.

“The treatment should be offered to patients by trained medical teams because we are dealing with an effective treatment,” the report said.

What few side effects resulted from the regular use of medical cannabis were defined as “moderate.” Dizziness was the main side effect documented by the researchers.

“Medical marijuana has become one of the treatments available to cancer patients in Israel in recent years [and therefore]the association beliefs that the issue should be regulated by the professionals in the field,” said Miri Ziv, director of the Israeli Cancer Association.

The number of medical marijuana patients in Israel has increased by about 66 percent per year in recent years, according to the study. Medical marijuana has been approved for use by about 6,000 Israelis suffering from various illnesses, according to the report.

Many legal issues related to medical marijuana remain unsolved, but Health Ministry officials believe that once the area is “fully regulated,” the number of patients treated with medical marijuana in Israel will reach 40,000.

Seven of the 12 farms authorized to grow medical cannabis are currently active in Israel, according to the report. Under a Health Ministry directive, the distribution centers currently operating are entitled to NIS 360 a month, per patient, to supply medical marijuana. They are entitled to another NIS 24 for rolling it into joints, and NIS 100 for delivery.

Patients who have medical marijuana permits issued before 2009 are eligible to grow up to 10 plants at home, with a maximum height of 1.5 meters (under five feet). Permits issued during the past two years only allow patients to possess medical marijuana “in keeping with the quantities prescribed.”

Article From Toke of the Town and republished with special permission.


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  1. Please send the study to the Governor of Vermont, Peter Shumlin.
    Is the State of Vermont unlawfully bullying
    medical marijuana patients
    by only allowing 1,000 of them
    to participate in using the
    new medical marijuana dispensaries in Vermont?

    Isn’t it a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act
    to only allow 1,000 severely ill people
    to participate in a state authorized non-profit
    groups’ programs and facilities?

    Just because the state authorized facilities
    are medical marijuana dispensaries which are
    in violation of federal laws, does that
    negate the patients’ protection under the ADA?

    No severly disabled person would even consider having to bribe
    State Police employees acting on behalf of
    the State of Vermont (the ones who make the decision
    to issue medical marijuana cards even though they aren’t doctors
    and the doctor has “prescribed” it), but for the fact that the new law of the
    State of Vermont only allows 1,000 persons to use a medical
    marijuana dispensary at any one time.

    No. 65. An act relating to registering four nonprofit organizations to dispense
    marijuana for symptom relief. (S.17)
    It is hereby enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Vermont:
    Sec. 1. 18 V.S.A. chapter 86, subchapter 2 is amended to read:
    Subchapter 2. Marijuana for Medical Symptom Use by Persons with Severe Illness
    Section 4472. Definitions…..
    Section 4474f. Dispensary Application, Approval, and Registration(a)(1)
    (page 25 of 39) (H) (2) (b) The total statewide number of registered patients who have designated a
    dispensary shall not exceed 1,000 at any one time.

    The Americans with Disabilities Act, Title III Technical Assistance Manual
    Covering Public Accomodations and Commercial Facilities
    November 1993
    U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, Disability Rights Section
    III-2.1000 General. Title III of the ADA prohibits discrimination against any
    “qualified individual with a disability.”

    If there become 1001 cancer patients in Vermont, then you cannot
    discriminate against the most recent one (1) because the State of Vermont
    decided to allow only 1000 patients to have medical marijuana cards.

    III-3.6000 Retaliation or coercion. Individuals who exercise their rights under
    the ADA, or assist others in exercising their rights, are protected from retaliation.

    III-8.1000 General. The ADA establishes two avenues for enforcement of the
    requirements of title III:
    (1) Private suits by individuals who are being subjected to discrimination or who have
    reasonable grounds for believing that they are about to be subjected to discrimination.;
    (2) Suits by the Department of Justice, whenever it has reasonable cause to believe
    that there is a pattern or practice of discrimination, or discrimination that raises an
    issue of general public importance. The Department will investigate complaints and
    conduct compliance reviews of covered entitites.

    Therefore, not only do the medical marijuana dispensaries violate federal
    marijuana laws,
    but they violate the ADA if only 1,000 persons in Vermont are allowed
    to have medical marijuana cards.

    The Department of Justice can intervene in any civil action under the ADA that any disabled
    person files if the State of Vermont denies them a medical marijuana card on the
    basis of discrimination that they will only allow 1,000 people to have
    a medical marijuana card,
    which discriminates against all other disabled persons
    who would otherwise qualify for a medical marijuana card in Vermont.

    The Americans with Disabilities Act, Title II Technical Assistance Manual
    Covering State and Local Government Programs and Services
    November 1993, U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, Disability Rights Section

    II-3.7100 Contracting. A public entity may not discriminate on the basis of disability in
    contracting for the purchase of goods and services.
    (the “goods” being marijuana, and the “services” being the cultivation and growing
    of marijuana in the medical marijuana dispensary business licensed by the State of Vermont.)

    Again, you can’t limit the number of otherwise qualified disabled persons to receive
    a medical marijuana card in Vermont.

    II-2.1000 General. Title II of the ADA prohibits discrimination against any “qualified
    individual with a disability.”

    etc., I could go on all day browsing these two technical assistance manuals and
    picking out sections that would be violated
    if the State of Vermont discriminates
    agains qualified individuals who would otherwise be eligible
    for a medical marijuana card
    if the State of Vermont did not put a “cap” on the limit of patients to only
    allowing 1,000 persons medical marijuana cards.

    : All Vermont State Marijuana
    Laws and Medical Marijuana Laws should be REPEALED.
    Repeal, repeal, repeal.
    Because there are so many Federal marijuana laws that it is a fraudulent
    “double billing” against taxpayers to waste Vermont State tax dollars hounding
    and stalking people for marijuana when you could simply leave it all up to the

    Search for marijuana laws, spell it two ways, marijuana with a j and marijuana with an h.
    The federal government has cleverly concealed how many federal marijuana laws there
    actually are by publishing some laws under one spelling and some under another.

    Feb. 1, 2012 What does the ground hog sniff for when he comes out of his hole?

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