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Can cannabis help reduce opioid deaths?


There is only weak evidence to support claims that medicinal cannabis reduces opioid-related deaths, says drug abuse expert A piece published in The Conversation has suggested that opioids can be substituted by medicinal cannabis with more effective results. Written by researchers from the University of British Columbia, the article says a 2014 study that analysed data from across the United States over a 10-year period found that states that had legalised medical cannabis saw 25% fewer opioid-related deaths, compared to states where medical cannabis remained illegal. The authors also said that in a 2017 study, 80% of medical cannabis patients in California reported that taking cannabis alone was more effective at treating their medical condition than taking cannabis with opioids. More than 90% agreed they would choose cannabis over opioids to treat their condition if it were readily available. Professor Wayne Hall from the University of Queensland’s Centre for Youth Substance Abuse Research said there was weak evidence to support the claims that cannabis reduces o