Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland
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The blunt truth: can marijuana fund better healthcare?

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journal contribution
posted on 2023-08-04, 08:40 authored by Hugh McGowan

Legalising marijuana to pay for addiction treatment is a stopgap measure. Development of cannabis-based drugs that minimise psychological impairment and psychoactive properties has considerable appeal, and creating avenues for research and regulation is preferable to legalisation permitting herbal preparations of unknown concentration. Legalising marijuana for recreational use introduces an addictive and intoxicating product, which impairs cognitive function, to the general public. Significant costs are already incurred by society due to the use of alcohol and tobacco, and as such the introduction of a new addictive agent makes little sense. Factoring in the rising requests for cannabis addiction treatment, which is already the second most requested addiction treatment in Ireland, arguments for legalisation are significantly undermined, with the prospect of commercial availability threatening to further exacerbate the problem. Although the revenue that would be generated is potentially significant, a fine balance would be required to prevent the associated health and safety concerns, rendering any income generated obsolete. 



The original article is available at Part of the RCSIsmj collection:

Published Citation

McGowan H. The blunt truth: can marijuana fund better healthcare? RCSIsmj. 2016;9(1):100-103

Publication Date



  • Undergraduate Research


RCSI University of Medicine and Health Sciences


  • Published Version (Version of Record)