One of the active components in marijuana should not be a scheduled drug, the World Health Organization (WHO) has declared in its latest report.
Legalization of cannabis has been on the rise across the globe, but health officials have warned that we should have enough research before ruling out any down sides.
The WHO, after months of deliberation and investigation, has endorsed a recommendation that cannabidiol (CBD) is a useful treatment for medical indications, including for epilepsy and palliative care. The organization also confirmed that CBD does not carry any addiction risks.
The Expert Committee on Drug Dependence (ECDD), however, will undertake a fuller review of cannabis and cannabis-related substances in May 2018.
Physicians and the cannabis industry have welcomed the decision with open arms.
The preliminary report, published today, also recommended to impose strong restrictions on fentanyl, a synthetic opioid which has potential use as a chemical weapon and killed roughly 64 000 people in America's drug addiction epidemic in 2016.
“There is increased interest from Member States in the use of cannabis for medical indications including for palliative care,” the report said.
“Recent evidence from animal and human studies shows that its use could have some therapeutic value for seizures due to epilepsy and related conditions,” the report added.
The report concluded that “current information does not justify scheduling of cannabidiol” and declared that taking medical marijuana will not lead to addiction.
Raul Elizalde, who drove the Mexican government to legalize medical marijuana so his first-born daughter Grace could access CBD, is ecstatic on the announcement. His daughter once suffered hundreds of seizures a day but now suffers a few seizures a day due to CBD.
“I never thought I would be doing this, that cannabis would be part of our life. But Grace changed everything. Now I know that just taking CBD is like taking a health supplement,” Elizalde told Daily Mail Online.
He confessed that CBD has changed their life.
Photo credit: Aloha Green