Paradigm shift: From prohibition to risk (harm?) reduction
Prohibition has proven to be ineffective in terms of its objectives since it does not meet its goals of reducing consumption, let alone eliminating it altogether; economically inefficient - it is hugely costly, obtaining in return very poor results if any at all; and socially unjust - it is especially focused on ethnic minorities and economically disadvantaged groups, which can be seen by the fact that while substance use is transversal in society (in terms of gender, class, ethnicity etc.), penalties and prison sentences are not. The perverse effects of prohibition have led to greater social and health problems (violence, corruption, epidemics, etc.) than those which it was originally intended to avoid.
"Therapeutic users have to have their own space where scientific criteria, objectivity and rigor prevail in so important and transcendental a matter as health".
Given this panorama, experts in the field and the international community are increasingly inclined to change the paradigm that currently guides action on drug policies in most countries; to replace the prohibitionist approach and police action with the new paradigm of risk reduction and health action in order to combat the social and health problems that may be generated by the compulsive or problematic consumption of currently controlled substances.
In terms of our field of enquiry, medical cannabis, prohibition has had and has very serious consequences: on the one hand, since the 1950s in which the cannabis sativa plant was declared a dangerous substance (without any scientific evidence and with a strong moralistic and even racist charge), the plant came to be considered without any therapeutic value (thus obviating thousands of years of medicinal use and its multiple properties). On the other hand, at present, due to the prohibition of the plant, biomedical researchers who work with cannabinoids encounter great difficulties when it comes to carrying out clinical trials where controlled cannabinoids such as THC are administered to people, despite the encouraging results of experimentation with in vitro and in vivo pre-clinical trials -in rodents- on the potential of cannabinoids as antitumor agents (previously cited).
One of the reasons for Medcan's existence is to provide detailed, objective and reliable information to the general public about medicinal cannabis and the therapeutic properties of cannabinoids.