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UI Med Alum: IA Needs Med Marijuana

IOWA CITY, IA (CBS2/FOX28) -- Iowa should legalize medical marijuana, and there is a well-regulated way to do it, said University of Iowa College of Medicine Distinguished Alum Dr. Steven Jenison at a presentation at the Iowa City Public Library on Tuesday night.

Jenison spoke to a packed house about his experience overseeing the successful implementation of New Mexico's medical marijuana program -- and how it could be beneficial to Iowans.

Medical cannabis can ease a lot of suffering that other types of medicine cannot, Jenison said. Anecdotal evidence from patients has shown that medical marijuana helps with reactions to chemotherapy, effects of HIV/AIDS, and extreme cases of anorexia.

"It's entirely plausible and probable that the things that these people were reporting have a real biological basis, and that medical cannabis really is a benefit in ways that other treatments are not as good," Jenison said.

Part of  New Mexico's success with the program is how well-regulated it is, he said. Patients need a physician's certification, have to show significant suffering, and show that other treatments have failed in order to be issued a prescription. That application is reviewed -- and can be turned down, Jenison said.
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