Overlooking the Medical Boards

Rep. Jarad Klein

Rep. Jarad Klein

July 2, 2017

Jarad Klein
Keo­ta, Iowa

Dear Rep. Klein,

Thank you for your work in expand­ing the Iowa Med­ical Cannabid­i­ol Act in 2017.  While Iowans for Med­ical Mar­i­jua­na (Iowa Busi­ness No. 334412) is con­cerned the pro­gram does not go far enough, pro­duc­tion of CBD in Iowa is a huge step for­ward.

As you men­tion in your inter­view with KCII Radio, Wash­ing­ton, IA, on June 30, the new Med­ical Cannabid­i­ol Advi­so­ry Board can rec­om­mend expan­sion of the pro­gram.  Pro­duc­tion in Iowa is the cor­ner­stone that makes it all pos­si­ble.

You also men­tion in your inter­view that the Med­ical Cannabid­i­ol Advi­so­ry Board is often over­looked by crit­ics of the pro­gram.  I would like to point out that the Iowa Board of Phar­ma­cy has also been over­looked through­out this process.  There is a pat­tern here that deserves your atten­tion.

In 2010, the Iowa Board of Phar­ma­cy rec­om­mend­ed the reclas­si­fi­ca­tion of mar­i­jua­na as a sub­stance with accept­ed med­ical use in the Unit­ed States.  The author­i­ty for their rec­om­men­da­tion can be found in Iowa Code § 124.201 (2017), and the require­ment that sub­stances clas­si­fied in sched­ule 1 must have no med­ical use in the Unit­ed States is found in Iowa Code § 124.203 (2017).

I have includ­ed the phar­ma­cy board’s rec­om­men­da­tion from Feb­ru­ary 17, 2010, and the leg­is­la­tion the board filed in 2011, to refresh your mem­o­ry.

It’s cer­tain­ly an emp­ty promise if the phar­ma­cy board’s rec­om­men­da­tions are not tak­en seri­ous­ly.  That could be the rea­son peo­ple are over­look­ing the sig­nif­i­cance of this new board now.  We can keep cre­at­ing boards, but the boards don’t mean much with­out seri­ous con­sid­er­a­tion of their rec­om­men­da­tions.

I do real­ize that pro­duc­tion of CBD in Iowa has been the biggest obsta­cle we’ve had to over­come.  I also real­ize the phar­ma­cy board’s rec­om­men­da­tion may have been pre­ma­ture.

How­ev­er, now that we have agreed on pro­duc­tion of CBD in Iowa, let’s get this plant out of sched­ule 1 so we are not mak­ing med­i­cine from a plant clas­si­fied as hav­ing no med­ical use in the Unit­ed States.  Forty-six states have accept­ed the mar­i­jua­na plant for med­ical use or extracts[1] from the plant as med­i­cine.  Either way, the plant is essen­tial in all forty-six states.

Com­pare this to mor­phine pro­duced from opi­um plants, or cocaine pro­duced from coca plants.  Opi­um plants and coca plants are not in sched­ule 1 and have nev­er been in sched­ule 1, show­ing a leg­isla­tive intent at the time these laws were cre­at­ed to exclude plants with med­ical use from sched­ule 1.

It’s time to fix the clas­si­fi­ca­tion.

Thank you for lis­ten­ing!


Carl Olsen

[1] CBD is one of many cannabi­noids.  State laws vary on the lev­el of THC that is allowed in a CBD prod­uct, but they don’t spec­i­fy any lev­els for the oth­er cannabi­noids.  These prod­ucts are referred to as “mar­i­jua­na extracts.”


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