New Study: Adult-Use Cannabis Availability Reduces Opioid Deaths

Researchers from the University of Massachusetts and Colorado State University released a new study on the impact recreational marijuana laws have on opioid-induced deaths.

The study links the availability of adult-use cannabis to a decrease in deaths by opioid overdose. The study found that opioid deaths were reduced by more than 20% in states where adult-use cannabis is available.

Why It’s Important

Opioids were responsible for 67.8% of all drug overdose deaths in 2017, accounting for 47,600 deaths in total, according to the study, which was published Aug. 6 in the Economic Inquiry journal. 

Cannabis has been presented by many as a safer alternative to opioids and an important tool in the opioid epidemic.

Cannabis’ potential role in mitigating the opioid crisis has not yet been conclusively confirmed, meaning that 

New research studies are crucial to prove or disprove cannabis’ capacity to help overcome the opioid epidemic.

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