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The Iowa Board of Pharmacy on Tuesday morning reclassified marijuana as a drug with medicinal purposes. The Board agreed to change cannabis from a Schedule One to a Schedule Two drug.
The new classification by the Board means that marijuana is now considered to have accepted medical use in treatment, reports Angie Hunt at KCCI in Des Moines.
Previously, as a Schedule One drug, marijuana was regarded as having no proven or acceptable medical uses.
Cannabis, in its new Schedule Two classification, is now classified with narcotics with a "high potential for abuse" such as opiates and methadone -- which is still quite inaccurate, medically speaking, but far better than its previous Schedule One, "no medical uses" classification.
Board members denied a petition requesting that they devise rules for the medical use of marijuana in Iowa. Board Chairman Vernon Benjamin claimed that would go beyond the scope of the Board's rule-making authority.
The Board can regulate drugs and professional pharmacists, Benjamin said, and then passed the buck back to the Iowa Legislature.
"We can't set any penalties," Benjamin said. "We can't set any guidelines on how marijuana's going to be produced, what standards are going to be. And I think all those kinds of thigns are things the Legislature's going to have the ultimate say-so about anyway."
Chances are slim that the Legislature will do anything about the medical marijuana issue in the upcoming session, according to Benjamin, but he added that "anything can happen."
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