States watching Illinois’ use of marijuana to fight opioid crisis

EVANSVILLE, Ind., Sept. 14 (UPI) — The Illinois legislature has become the first state to give doctors the ability to prescribe marijuana instead of opiates in an effort to fight the opioid epidemic, with other states looking to follow.

A small but growing body of research suggests that access to medical marijuana reduces opioid use — and therefore opioid addiction. The effect is so drastic that some policy experts say it may be an effective tool to combat the country’s growing opioid crisis.

“If you look at states that allow medical cannabis, there are fewer people dying from opioid overdoses,” said more at

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