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American Academy of Pediatrics says medical marijuana could be good for some kids

They have updated a policy statement from 2004.

By
Thor Benson
Bottle of marijuana. (UPI/Shutterstock/Atomazul)
Bottle of marijuana. (UPI/Shutterstock/Atomazul)

WASHINGTON, Jan. 26 (UPI) -- The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), which has the largest pediatric publishing program in the world, recommends decriminalizing marijuana and says it could be good for some kids in a new policy statement.

"The AAP opposes 'medical marijuana' outside the regulatory process of the US Food and Drug Administration," says the new statement. However, it recognizes certain situations could be benefitted by marijuana.

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"Notwithstanding this opposition to use, the AAP recognizes that marijuana may currently be an option for cannabinoid administration for children with life-limiting or severely debilitating conditions and for whom current therapies are inadequate," the statement goes on to say.

Marijuana is currently a schedule I drug, which means it is considered to have "no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse." Heroin and LSD are also schedule I drugs. The AAP recommends marijuana be reclassified as a schedule II drug, which would make it so there could be federal research of possible benefits of using marijuana. They recommend marijuana be limited to people over 21 years of age if it is legalized, unless a younger patient has very specific circumstances.

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The statement also touches on how the young people who are caught with marijuana can be affected for the rest of their lives. "The illegality of marijuana has resulted in the incarceration of hundreds of thousands of adolescents, with overrepresentation of minority youth," the statement says. "A criminal record can have lifelong negative effects on an adolescent who otherwise has had no criminal justice history. These effects can include ineligibility for college loans, housing, financial aid, and certain kinds of jobs."

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