Our View: Get cannabis extract in Utah

Friday , August 15, 2014 - 12:00 AM

Editorial Board

Utah State Sen. Steve Urquhart, a Republican from St. George, has suggested that state liquor stores sell cannibas oil. The cannibas extract, which is low potency, is allowed for Utah residents who wish to treat patients with severe epilepsy. There is a belief, disputed by some, that the cannabis extract provides some relief for seizures caused by the epilepsy.

In our opinion, having state liquor stores sell the cannabis oil is a good idea that should be seriously considered. It has the potential to cut costs for families who have to travel to Colorado, or other locations, to get the cannabis extract oil. Federal law prohibits the cannabis oil, and Utah, by law, currently can’t be involved in its production or distribution.

As Urquhart has noted, if the extract oil can be sold in state liquor stores, the state may have more control over access to it by those who need it. And the need for cannabis extract oil is important in Utah. It’s particularly sought by the parents of young children who suffer from severe epilepsy. In the first month of the state program that was approved by Gov. Gary Herbert, there were 11 registration cards issued. The costs for registration are less than anticipated, $200 instead of $400. There will be more cards sought.

It was a good deed Utah legislators did in allowing the cannabis oil to be used as a treatment that a doctor can prescribe. It’s ridiculous that the extract, cannabidiol, is considered illegal under federal law. It does not make users high, it merely provides relief to children and others who are suffering. 

Access to the cannabis oil extract should be as easy as possible for the patients, particularly so for those parents desperately trying to provide relief for their young children. Whether it’s through a state liquor store or another means, let’s find a way for patients to receive the extract in-state and as easily as possible.

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