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Monday, December 5, 2016

World News for December 2016 - by Rachel Bunting

Cannabis Inhaler
Israel: Recently Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. Signed a cooperation and marketing agreement with Syqe Medical, an Israeli company, to market the first ever inhaler for cannabis. Syqe will be producing the inhaler and cartridges while Teva will be the exclusive distributor in Israel. According to Globes Israel’s Business Arena there are nearly 26,000 medical patients in the country. They also claim the average patient spend around $1,000 a year on the medication. The individual cartridges are biodegradable and will allow patients to intake the optimal marijuana dosage for their ailment. The inhaler is already being used at the Rambam Medical Center in Haifa, which is the first hospital to use cannabis regularly as a treatment. 

Large Bust Down Under
Australia: Four men and two women have been arrested following a massive raid that took place throughout Sydney last month. Police raided 13 houses discovering various grow sites with sophisticated hydroponics setups. Marijuana, with a street value near $2.5 million, was seized and transported to a warehouse. All six arrested were refused bail and will be appearing before the Bankstown Local Court in early December for various drug-related and criminal charges. 

Easier Access Demanded
Zurich: The Green Party has launched a new bill in the parliament for a new medical marijuana system. The Party claims the current system, which requires potential patients to get authorization from the Swiss Federal Health Office, is ‘so complicated and overly bureaucratic that many people look to obtain the drug illegally’. The new legislature would allow those suffering from illnesses whose symptoms are lightened by marijuana use to be granted an identity card giving them the right to use their medication. Authorities must receive approval from the federal health office before the new plan can be put into place. The bill will also create a ‘pilot project that will act as research into the effects of the regulated sale of cannabis on the consumption and purchasing behavior of participants’.

Pot for Pets
Canada: Pet owners in Toronto looking for alternative treatments for their ailing, furry companions need to look no further than Pacifico medical marijuana dispensary. The business sells treats and tinctures containing cannabidiol (CBD) made specifically for animals. Manager of the store, Ken Abell, told CBC News the dog treats popularity cause them to fly off the shelves. The treats are guaranteed not to get the pet high as it does not contain THC.  “We sell straight CBD tinctures with absolutely zero THC. There are no psychotropic effects, only the medicinal benefits of CBD,” Abell said. Though CBD is legal in Canada, though only for medial patients, Picfico, and similar business, are running illegally as the current medical marijuana laws in Canada require the patient receive their medication through mail from a licensed distributor. 

Cannabis Oil Legalized
Buenos Aires: The Lower House has finally approved a law which will allow patients prescribed marijuana to use cannabis oil as a treatment. There were 221 votes in favor of the bill with only one against. The bill puts the responsibility of approving the importation of the oil on the National Administration of Medicine, Food, and Technology. It also creates a regulatory framework for research of the medication. The hospitals will begin carrying the product for treatment of epileptic seizures. 

Ireland in Favor of Medicating
Ireland: A new survey shows that nearly 92% of the Irish would approve of marijuana being legalized for medical purposes. This survey only had 1,000 randomly picked respondents who were interviewed via telephone. Women showed higher favorability at 93% while 90% of men approved of doctor recommended marijuana. A bill supporting medical cannabis will be part of a debate in Dail this week. 

Not So Lucky Star
London: Famous musician Madonna has been in the news lately, not for her music but for the behavior of her son. The son of Madonna and Guy Ritchie, Rocco Ritchie, was found in possession of marijuana last month. Officers received a tip from neighbors who were concerned about the 16 year olds ‘drug habit’. There are reports that Camden Borough’s Youth Offending Team have been working with the teen, attempting to rehabilitate him and help him understand the error of his ways. Madonna released a statement to the Associated Press, “I love my son very much. I will do whatever I can to give him the support that he needs, and I ask that you respect our privacy at this time.” 

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