This week, two studies in Addiction took aim at some arguments medical marijuana supporters and detractors use when fighting for and against that “dank chronic” (dope list of marijuana slang here.) Medical marijuana supporters argue that opioid abusers would substitute marijuana for pain relief, leading to fewer opioid overdoses. While studies do identify a correlation between a decline in overdose deaths and the passage of medical marijuana legislation, the first study determined that the evidence doesn’t support the laws causing the drop. On the flip side, detractors warn that one of the evils of passing this legislation is more adolescents picking up a pot habit. While that could be bad, the second study couldn’t identify that trend actually occurring in legal weed states.
Apologies if this reads more like an editorial, but really? Two lawmakers in New York have proposed legislation that stipulates laundry detergent manufacturers must manufacture their products with uniform, dull colors in order to not encourage consumption by people. Of course, teenagers consuming laundry detergent is awful but anyone hypothesizing that they’re doing it because the pods look tasty has never met a teenager. I guess law makers gonna try to make laws. According to this article, there’s hope because similar efforts have failed in the past. Also, here’s a list of ridiculous warning labels. Because why not?
A bill proposed in the U.S. House of Representatives, the Protecting Access to Care Act of 2017, would cap noneconomic damages in medical malpractice cases to $250,000. Many healthcare organizations are giving this bill a huge thumbs-up since it’ll allow them to focus less on so-called defensive medicine, bringing down healthcare costs. It also proposes protecting health care providers from being affected by product liability lawsuits against products approved by the FDA. However, opponents argue that it will deny plaintiffs the ability to get full repayment for wrongdoings. It hasn’t been put up for a full House vote yet, but this is definitely an interesting bill to watch. No word yet on if it will protect HCPs from relentlessly insulting anesthetized patients.
Well, President Trump… hey, where are you going? Don’t go yet! The President released his 2018 budget proposal. (We have saved you others’ analyses. This is the source document). Along with many other departments, the NIH may find itself wondering where 20% of its money went (go to p. 22 of the document). Also, prices are going up at the FDA. Plan on submitting a drug for approval? That might cost you double next year. InsightCity recommends you spend a few minutes in this document. It’s surprisingly readable. Also, the President and Congress have until October to come to an agreement so there’s little chance the proposal survives intact. There’s probably a better chance that the government shuts down or that pigs fly.
Providing notice of drug price increases sounds reasonable, right? “Not so simple,” say opponents of proposed California drug pricing legislation that calls for a 60-day notice of price increases. Opponents of the bill contend this could hang small pharmacies out to dry as larger pharmacies might be motivated to hoard drugs to avoid the higher prices to come. This could leave areas with fewer hospitals and pharmacies in danger of not being able to obtain drugs for patients with chronic illnesses. The bill could set a precedent in a movement to open up transparency across the health care system. But it could also lead to some nasty unintended consequences. Ugh. Healthcare is hard.