Medical marijuana: An idea long and widely in use

If Oklahomans pass State Question 788 on June 26 they will open the door to medical marijuana in the state. 

But, passing SQ788 won’t put Oklahoma in new territory for the use of marijuana for medical purposes.

According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), people have used cannabis, also called marijuana, “for a variety of health conditions for at least 3,000 years,” with another NIH report citing as many as 5,000 years.

In a 2017 article, the NIH stated “cannabis was widely utilized as a patent medicine during the 19th and early 20th centuries” in the United States, and was first listed as a pharmaceutical drug in the U.S. in 1850.

Marijuana use wasn’t federally regulated in the U.S. until 1937, according to the NIH article.

The NIH pointed out that today, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) hasn’t certified marijuana “safe or effective for treating any health problems.”

Marijuana still is listed as

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