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Medical Marijuana Laws for Patients

While marijuana use remains illegal at the federal level, 27 states and the District of Columbia have made medical use legal.

This page explores comprehensive medical marijuana laws for patients, including the diseases and symptoms that qualify a patient to use medical marijuana, where medical marijuana can be used, whether non-residents can use medical marijuana, and the possession limits for patients. This dataset includes states with comprehensive medical marijuana programs; it does not include state laws allowing the medical use of low-THC products in certain situations.

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Medical Marijuana Product Safety

As more states have continued to pass laws legalizing medical use of marijuana, the majority have also established product safety measures to protect consumers. These safety regulations vary from state to state. This dataset analyzes state guidelines for medical marijuana product preparation, testing, packaging, labeling, and advertising, all factors that contribute to overall product safety. This dataset includes states with comprehensive medical marijuana programs; it does not include state laws allowing the medical use of low-THC products in certain situations.

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Direct Dispensing of Controlled Substances Laws

This dataset examines statutes and regulations on the dispensing of a controlled substance by physicians, physician assistants, and nurse practitioners to their patients in an office setting. Generally, a physician is permitted to directly dispense controlled substances during the normal practice of medicine after securing any required certificates or registrations.

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Opioid Prescribing Guidelines for Acute and Emergency Care

According to the CDC, since 1999 the number of opioid prescriptions have quadrupled. With a significant amount of those opioid prescriptions being written for acute pain or in emergency departments, some states have developed opioid prescribing guidelines for acute and emergency care to help avoid over prescribing. These guidelines are generally adopted by statutes, regulations, state department guidelines, and medical board guidelines.

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Pain Management Clinic Laws

According to the CDC, 91 Americans die from opioid overdoses every day, and prescriptions for opioids are involved in almost half of all opioid overdose deaths. Some states have adopted laws that designate certain medical practices that provide management services as pain management clinics and subject these clinics to extra regulation. This dataset focuses on state laws that regulate pain management clinics, clinic owners, and the physicians that work at the clinics.

This dataset is longitudinal, capturing laws from January 1, 2006 through June 1, 2018.

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Drug Induced Homicide Laws

This dataset examines statutes that authorize the prosecution of drug-related deaths as criminal killings. Oftentimes referred to as drug induced homicide laws, these laws establish criminal liability for individuals who furnish or deliver controlled substances to another individual who dies as a result. These laws vary from state to state in how they are classified, how they are sentenced, and what elements need to be proven. This dataset highlights these differences among state drug induced homicide laws. 

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PDMP Access and Registration

Prescription drug monitoring programs (PDMPs) collect patient-specific prescription information in centralized databases in an effort to reduce the misuse of controlled medicines. This dataset encompasses laws regulating which professions have access to the database and for what purpose, whether practitioners can delegate their access, whether patients can see their own information, and the extent to which access to individually-identified records may be granted for law enforcement purposes.

This is a longitudinal dataset, displaying laws from January 1, 1998 to July 1, 2016.

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PDMP Administration

Prescription drug monitoring programs (PDMPs) collect patient-specific prescription information in centralized databases in an effort to reduce the misuse of controlled medicines. This dataset captures rules governing the administration of state PDMPs, including which department collects and stores the data, how the PDMP program is funded, and program's powers and duties to act under the law.

This is a longitudinal dataset, displaying laws from January 1, 1998 to July 1, 2016.

This dataset was created by Legal Science.

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PDMP Implementation Dates

Prescription drug monitoring programs (PDMPs) collect patient-specific prescription information in centralized databases in an effort to reduce the misuse of controlled substances. This dataset captures the important dates for each state’s PDMP, including the dates of enactment, operation, and user access. These dates were compiled through contact with PDMP administrators from each state program by Brandeis’ PDMP Training and Technical Assistance Center (TTAC). The information is publicly available and is published here in dataset format with the permission of Brandeis’ PDMP TTAC.

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PDMP Reporting and Authorized Use

Prescription drug monitoring programs (PDMPs) collect patient-specific prescription information in centralized databases in an effort to reduce the misuse of controlled medicines. This dataset captures laws governing PDMP reporting and authorized use. The topic includes who is required to report to the PDMP, what drug schedules must be reported to the PDMP, and whether the PDMP is authorized to share data with insurers, state Medicaid programs, or PDMPs located in other states.

This is a longitudinal dataset, displaying laws from January 1, 1998 to July 1, 2016.

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