Cannabis-derived epilepsy drug Epidiolex was approved by The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) back in June, but it couldn’t hit the market until the DEA issued an order changing its stance on FDA-approved pharmaceutical treatment with the phytocannabinoid cannabidiol (CBD). As of Sept. 27, the US Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) “places certain drug products that have been approved by the FDA and which contain cannabidiol (CBD) in schedule V of the Controlled Substances Act (CSA). Specifically, this order places FDA-approved drugs that contain CBD derived from cannabis and no more than 0.1 percent tetrahydrocannabinols [THC] in schedule V.”
As reported by CNBC, the DEA’s rescheduling will have a positive impact on epilepsy patients’ lives. This news also marks the first time that the DEA has budged on updating its cannabis regulation policy to reflect the times. The careful, guarded order made it clear the agency was not broadly approving CBD.
As medical and recreational cannabis legalization marches a protracted conquering tour of America, the FBI’s latest uniform crime reports show that US law enforcement’s recent arrest numbers hinge on an uptick in prosecution for so-called drug abuse violations. As The Washington Post reported via headline: “More people were arrested last year over pot than for murder, rape, aggravated assault and robbery—combined.”
These recently published FBI reports reveal that drug arrests (1,632,921) vastly outstripped all other crime categories in 2017; runners-up include driving under the influence (990,678) and larceny (950,357). Nearly 91 percent (599,000) of people arrested for cannabis violations in the US in 2017 were charged with simple possession. American cannabis drug arrests grew for a second successive year in 2017, following an almost decade-long decline.