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STEVE ELLIOTT

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A joint Canadian-American effort is establishing the largest Harm Reduction study ever performed involving opioids and cannabis in North America. The two-year, evidence-based cohort study will investigate the potential of medicinal cannabis as an opioid substitute in the treatment of chronic pain and acute conditions.

Both Canada and the United Statesn are at the center of an opioid epidemic. Deaths due to opioid overdose continue to rapidly rise in Canada making it second in highest users of opioids and third leading cause of accidental death in Ontario. In Ontario alone, these drugs are estimated to have killed nearly 2,500 people between 2011 and 2014.

The objective of the study is to assess the therapeutic satisfaction of patients using prescribed cannabis and to compare the subjective effects among the available strains as compared to prescription opioid use. The results of this study may aid in further research, present information, options and next steps for developing an effective evidence-based policy for potential substitution of opioids.

In recent news, opioid overdose involving Fentanyl made headlines as the main factor in the death of the musician Prince. Meanwhile, in Canada, the number of opioid deaths and overdoses are increasing rapidly. In 2007 an estimated 47,000 deaths a year were reported by the Health Officers Council of British Columbia. The Narcotics Control Board reports that Canadians use of opioids increased by 203 percent between 2000 and 2010.

This groundbreaking international Harm Reduction Study will provide a basis to create clinical guidelines for healthcare practitioners. The vital missing information is in the clinical evidence healthcare practitioners need in order to advise patients on optimal dosages, strains and routes of administration with respect to co-morbidities, contraindications, adverse effects, drug-drug interactions and medical conditions.

Canadian company National Access Cannabis, in collaboration with U.S.-based Phytosciences Consultants, is establishing the study.

National Access Cannabis operates in various cities across Canada and assists patients through the process of obtaining the required legal documents to possess medicinal cannabis. They also connect patients with a suitable legal, licensed producer approved by Health Canada, as well as educate patients on the various forms of consumption, plant varieties, cannabinoids, effects, etc.

Founded by President and CEO Dr. Pritesh Kumar, Phytoscience’s primary mission is to promote cannabinoid research, establish standards within the cannabis testing sector and serve as a global leader in ethical laboratory and testing practices.

To read full details on the Harm Reduction study visit http://www.opiatestudy.com.

 

 

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