OMMP Expert Panel Meeting for the addition of qualifying conditions
July 27, 2009,
Meeting number 1
A Bad Day For Patients
The OMMP expert Panel met for three hours on July 27 at the Portland State Office Building. The meeting was attended by over 50 patients who were present to witness the process.
The panel members present included Alan Cohn MD, Grant Higginson MD, Marian Fireman MD, Stormy Ray and Tom Dodson, MD. Diane Lia LCSW and Teresa Keane FNP were not present.
The trajectory of the meeting became clear after the initial comments and panel process was completed. The panel facilitator, Dr. Don Austin assisted the panel with formulating agreeable definitions for Depression and Depressive symptoms.
The consideration of the evidence and the structure of what constituted evidence was drawn so narrowly at this meeting that nothing could be considered except the narrowly focused and small evidence that was provided to panel members in folders marked “risk” and “benefit”. The evidence grading criteria determined by Dr. Austin include only research conducted on humans. Since there has been a systematic policy by the U.S. Government for 50 years to disallow research into cannabis, the existing research is miniscule in comparison to the patient experience. Therefore, the panel members are forced to conclude that evidence is weak or insufficient to justify inclusion of any condition.
These evidence grading criteria are so tightly focused that no drug could possibly be approved using these rules. The complete lack of admission of any of the petitioner’s materials during these discussions, effectively eliminated ”balance” from the panel.
The petitioner, and patients and public will be given one session (the third) to present testimony.
The second meeting of the OMMP expert panel will held on August 13, 2009 from 3PM to 5:30PM.
Patients are strongly urged to attend this meeting, which will consider PTSD, Severe anxiety, and agitation.