Cover, June 4: “Rx Test”
"Spokesman Vigil says two patients complained about suspected contamination from butane and pesticides, but testing proved both complaints were unfounded."
Kenny Vigil did not explain that in at least one complaint there was an insufficient amount of product to perform the analysis and the New Mexico Department of Health Scientific Laboratory Division (SLD) requested additional sample material be submitted. The producer that was the subject of the complaint was contacted and the request was made to submit additional product for testing. The state had no way to verify that the additional sample material was from the same batch or even the same strain as the product called into question.
It was communicated to me that SLD was under the impression that I would collect the additional sample material. This was not the case. In fact, this investigation was handled so poorly that the producer of the product was sent correspondence by then Secretary of Health Catherine Torres that Page Analytical had performed the analysis, which it had not.
The state has an obligation to do conduct a thorough investigation of product complaints, which they failed to do in this instance, and the data should be considered inconclusive due to inadequate control over the sample collection process.
I'm glad this story was written. I have a number of medical challenges, including lung damage. Therefore, I must rely entirely on edibles and tinctures for treatment (in addition to my "Western medicine" prescriptions). I, like many people, cannot smoke or vaporize.
With edibles in general, knowing the right dose is truly a pain. I've resolved the problem by purchasing a month's worth of medical cannabis products at once. I "try out" an item, and then titrate my dose based on the results. It's worth noting that with edibles, you cannot evaluate the effect for an hour or two.
I purchase my cannabis medicine from Fruit of the Earth Organics and New MexiCann. Both are extremely dedicated to patient care, and both constantly ask for feedback on their ingestible formulations.
This is an evolving field, and yes, accurate labeling of ingestibles is most welcome by me, the patient. What is not welcome is further sabotage by the Martinez administration. I am so deeply offended that Gov. Susana Martinez would try and take away the one medicine that really helps me with pain. Seems downright un-American.
Lastly, a big oversight in this article—It is the CBD component, not THC, that people with pain/neuropathy/inflammation usually seek. CBD does not have any psychotropic effects. But getting CBD cannabis medicine in an edible is really hard. THC is generally preferred by people with anxiety/sleep disorders and does have psychotropic effects. This is a major distinction not made in the article. I hope the SFR will address this topic in future coverage.
It is my understanding that the majority of patients purchase bud, so I'm curious as to why the testing of flower isn't even mentioned. It sure would be helpful if the DOH set up some type of complaint system for patients, as the current one, whatever it is, doesn't appear to be working correctly.
Editor's Note: Our story focused on cannabis-derived edibles because we received a tip that some of them appeared to not contain as much THC as advertised. Patients who have complaints about the potency of bud or edibles should write the Department of Health at email@example.com
I am very proud of the Medical Cannabis Program's success; however, I am concerned that many of the proposed rule changes will have a detrimental effect on the program, eventually leading to its destruction. The new rules cut the permitted plant count in half for home-growers. The rule change also increases the cost to patients, requires an expensive federal criminal background check every year and paints suffering patients as criminals.
According to the only laboratory certified by the DOH to conduct cannabis testing in New Mexico, the proposed testing far exceeds the random sampling procedures used by the FDA. The costs are prohibitive, which will limit access for our lowest-income patients.
We will have several hundred patients converging on the Medical Cannabis Advisory Board meeting on June 16 at 9 am at the Harold Runnels Building (1190 St. Francis Drive). The patients will express anger and frustration at the lack of compassion contained within the rules changes.
New Mexico Medical
Cannabis Patient's Alliance
Sex Ed, June 4: “Zoning Regulations Cock Block Sex Shops”
It's not just about sex toys. It's about sexual health and sex choices, and the idea that consensual and respectful sex, kinky or not, is not something to hide away, but something to embrace as an integral part of our being. Bringing shops with sexual health professionals and experts (whom people can trust to approach with their sex-related questions, whether it involves toys or not) to an open-minded, health-conscious community is a no-brainer. And it's recession-proof.
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