New Mexico


New Mexico adds opioid use to conditions for medical pot

A state at the forefront of the U.S. opioid and drug overdose epidemic is turning to its medical marijuana program to reduce suffering from drug use and addiction.

New Mexico health officials on Thursday expanded the list of qualifying conditions for the state's medical cannabis program to include opioid use disorder, joining several other states. Other qualifying conditions that were added include Alzheimer's disease, autism spectrum disorder and three degenerative neurological disorders.


New Mexico provider says medical cannabis sales trail enrollment growth

Patient enrollment in New Mexico’s medical marijuana program grew at a fast clip in April.

The New Mexico Department of Health says patient enrollment in the cannabis program for health ailments such as cancer, chronic pain and post-traumatic stress disorder increased by 1,632 to 72,375 in April. That’s the equivalent of a 28% annual growth rate.

New Mexico’s largest medical marijuana seller said Monday that statewide growth in medical cannabis sales trailed far behind enrollment gains between March 2018 and March 2019.

Albuquerque-based Ultra Health says annual medical marijuana sales grew by 16%. That’s less than half the 39% growth rate for enrollment.


New Mexico Governor signs Laws expanding legal protections for cannabis patients

Democratic Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham signed a pair of bills into law last week amending the state’s medical cannabis program to expand patients’ access to the plant and to provide additional legal protections.


Governor of New Mexico decriminalizes marijuana possession

One month after policymakers failed to pass a bill legalizing marijuana in the state, New Mexico has signed into effect a law to decriminalize cannabis. Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham authorized the legislation, which will reduce the punishment for possession of up to a half ounce of weed from up to 15 days in jail to a fee of $50.

The Senate passed SB 323 in March by a vote of 30 to 8. The House took its time deliberating over some Judiciary Committee amendments, eventually approving the legislation mere hours before its session concluded.


Medical marijuana program may expand in New Mexico

New Mexico might not be joining some other Western states in legalizing recreational marijuana use – at least not yet – but the state’s medical cannabis program could undergo some big changes in the coming months.

A bill awaiting final action on Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s desk would allow for the use of medical marijuana in schools, while also extending the length of an approved patient identification card from one year to three years.

In addition, members of the state’s Medical Cannabis Advisory Board recommended on Friday via a 4-0 vote adding opioid addiction as a qualifying condition in the state’s program.


Prospects dim for NM marijuana legalization bill

A House-approved bill that would make New Mexico the nation’s 11th state to legalize recreational marijuana use appears to have hit a dead end in a Senate committee.

Senate Finance Committee Chairman John Arthur Smith. D-Deming, said late last night the legislation does not have enough votes to pass out of his panel.

“Right now, that doesn’t have enough votes in the Senate Finance Committee,” Smith said in an interview.

He also said one of the bill’s sponsors had asked him not to hold a hearing on the measures if it did not have enough votes to pass.


Bill Improving New Mexico’s Medical Cannabis Program passes Senate Floor

Yesterday Senate Bill 406 passed the Senate Floor (33-2). The measure, sponsored by Senator Gerald Ortiz y Pino (D-Bernalillo) seeks to and expand access to medical cannabis in New Mexico. Currently many medical cannabis patients still face discrimination and lack access to their medicine.

Statement from Senator Ortiz y Pino:


Marijuana study: THC could have more medical value than CBD

Often in the media, general conversations about marijuana’s medicinal benefits reduce the plant’s 100-plus cannabinoids to a focus of one — cannabidiol, or CBD, as it’s commonly referred. CBD is non-psychoactive, presenting an easier entry point for new users while THC includes the intoxicating “high” cannabis is known for. One reductive consensus you might hear is that CBD contains all the good therapeutic value of cannabis, while THC includes virtually known and only benefits those who want to get high.


New Mexico raises cap for medical marijuana producers

New Mexico's medical marijuana producers have received approval from state regulators to temporarily boost by fivefold the number of plants they are allowed to grow as the result of a legal battle centered on concerns about demand and adequate supplies.

The state health department issued is an emergency rule change last Friday, when a court order invalidating the state's 450-plant limit was set to kick in.

The amendment sets the cap at 2,500 plants per producer at least through Aug. 28. It will be up to the health department to launch a public process over the next six months for crafting a permanent rule that governing how many plants will be allowed.


THC might have more medical value than CBD, says cannabis study

A group of researchers from the University of New Mexico have found that scientists may have been mistaken about the chemicals that are most and least associated with marijuana's medicinal properties, writes Calvin Hughes.

THC is the compound in marijuana best-known for creating the signature high you get after consuming cannabis. And most of the time, THC is disregarded as having any medicinal properties. Instead, the medicinal properties of marijuana are usually attributed to CBD, a cannabis compound that does not have any intoxicating effects. That may not be the case though, as new research suggests these common assumptions about THC and CBD could be wrong.


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