Iowa Doctors Hesitant About New Medical Marijuana Program

KELO Iowa Locator

Only about 325 of Iowa’s 7,000 doctors have certified people for the state’s new medical marijuana program, in part because many are uneasy about their role in the system.
Doctors certify that patients have qualifying medical conditions but don’t prescribe medical marijuana products. Instead, five dispensaries will sell to patients who have obtained specials state cards for having conditions such as intractable pain, cancer or epilepsy.
Fewer than 600 patients have been approved to participate in the program to launch Dec. 1.
Des Moines oncologist Richard Deming is the director of Mercy Medical Center’s cancer center. He says he’s uncomfortable with the program because the products haven’t been proven safe and effective. Deming says he’s also concerned that there aren’t scientifically established dosing levels.

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