Opioid-for-Cannabis program in Oregon waiting approval

Cannabis retailers join the war against opioids

photo by Brako Vision Media

Cannabis retailers Kaya Shack, operated by Kaya holdings is working on a pilot program to swap medical marijuana for opioids. The company is petitioning law enforcement and state regulators.

The program called Kaya Cares would allow patients who would like to try medical cannabis to exchange their opioids for medical cannabis free of charge.

A senior advisor at Kaya, David Jones cited the almost 100 opioid-related deaths daily in our country. Jones also spoke of the devastation families face and the disruption of our economy due to higher health care costs as well as decreased productivity.

In a press release, Jones said, “We believe a program like Kaya Cares and other initiatives to be undertaken by [Kaya] will help transition people away from dangerous opioids, making the government’s war on opioids a little more successful.”

The company was inspired by President Trump’s proclamation of, “the war on the opioid epidemic,” according to CEO Craig Frank. In a statement, Frank said, “we want to help people in the communities we serve, as well as demonstrate that cannabis companies can be part of the President’s solution to the crisis.”

With anti-cannabis champion Governor Chris Christie at the top of Trump’s opioid commission as well as longtime cannabis prohibition crusader Jeff Sessions at the top of the Justice Department it is uncertain if this idea will gain traction.

There is research that would support the position that cannabis can substitute for opioids in a number of cases.