Branford hospice to conduct medical marijuana research - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Branford hospice to conduct medical marijuana research

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(WFSB file photo) (WFSB file photo)

Connecticut lawmakers met in Branford on Monday, where the first hospice in the country has been approved to conduct a medical marijuana study.

The Connecticut Hospice of Branford has been approved to conduct the research, in hopes of improving pain management and reduce opioid use.

A press release said Dr. Wen-Jen Hwu, MD, PhD, Professor of Medical Oncology at the MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas and Chairman of The Connecticut Hospice, Inc.’s Professional Advisory Committee, said the goals of The Connecticut Hospice, Inc. medical marijuana research project are to:

  • Improve pain and symptom management as identified by decreased average numeric pain scores
  • Decrease the use of opioids
  • Decrease nausea, vomiting and improve appetite
  • Improve overall well-being including depression

“Anything that can relieve pain and suffering is something we want access to,” said Dr. Hwu. 

Gov. Dannel Malloy and Senator Richard Blumenthal attended the event.

“A lifetime of addiction and suffering can begin with a single opioid prescription. Identifying breakthrough alternative therapies to safely manage pain is vital to curbing the scourge of opioid abuse,” said U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal. “Connecticut Hospice is helping to lead the way—hopefully producing results that can ease pain and reduce the risks of addiction nationwide.”

“Connecticut has continued to set the national standard for research and technology, and we’re always happy to welcome new fields of study to the state, especially when they help our families who need it most,” said Governor Dannel P. Malloy. “We welcome more research regarding the benefits of medical marijuana, and are excited to see what results come from health care facilities and higher education institutions in the coming years.”

“We’re happy about the progress Connecticut’s Medical Marijuana Program has made since medication became available in September of 2014. We now have nearly 15,000 patients with severe debilitating conditions who are getting the medication they need to live healthier lives,” said Consumer Protection Commissioner Jonathan A. Harris. 

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