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The opioid crisis has shaken our country to its very core. Destroying lives and families, the addiction totals to $72 billion in annual medical expenses. Father-daughter research duo W. David and Ashley Bradford, however, have recently discovered that when states implement medical marijuana laws, the purchases of prescription drugs drop exponentially. 

“What we hope people take away from this is that when marijuana becomes available as a clinical option, physicians and patients together are reacting as if marijuana is medicine,” David Bradford, told TIME magazine.

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In states where the purchase of medical cannabis is legal, doctors on average doled out 1,826 fewer prescriptions for painkillers. The Bradfords learned that states with cannabis-friendly laws saved $165.2 million per year in medical-related fees.

In 2014, nearly 2 million Americans were abusing opioids. These addictions resulted in more than 14,000 overdoses that year. If more states embrace cannabis-positive legislation, then possibly we can end the opioid crisis once and for all.

Read the full study published in Health Affairs entitled “Medical Marijuana Laws Reduce Prescription Medication Use In Medicare Part d.”

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