8/11 DEA Press Release

The DEA released their long-awaited decision surrounding the petition to reschedule cannabis sativa (industrial hemp and marijuana) from Schedule I to Schedule II. The DEA’s response:

Based on the HHS evaluation and all other relevant data, the DEA has concluded that there is no substantial evidence that marijuana should be removed from Schedule I.

In his response letter to the petitioners, Gina Raimondo (Governor of Rhode Island), Jay Inslee (Governor of Washington) and Bryan Krumm (nurse practitioner), DEA Acting Administrator, Chuck Rosenberg reinforces the DEA’s stance on the Schedule I classification of cannabis sativa:

  • Marijuana has a high potential for abuse.The HHS evaluation and the additional data gathered by the DEA show that marijuana has a high potential for abuse.
  • Marijuana has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States.Based on the established five-part test for making such determination, marijuana has no “currently accepted medical use” because: As detailed in the HHS evaluation, the drug’s chemistry is not known and reproducible; there are no adequate safety studies; there are no adequate and well-controlled studies proving efficacy; the drug is not accepted by qualified experts; and the scientific evidence is not widely available.
  • Marijuana lacks accepted safety for use under medical supervision.At present, there are no marijuana products approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), nor is marijuana under a New Drug Application (NDA) evaluation at the FDA for any indication. The HHS evaluation states that marijuana does not have a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States or a currently accepted medical use with severe restrictions. At this time, the known risks of marijuana use have not been shown to be outweighed by specific benefits in well-controlled clinical trials that scientifically evaluate safety and efficacy.

Accompanied with the letter, the DEA includes a document of the analysis that the DEA performed in conjunction with the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Food Drug Administration (FDA). The bulk of the document details eight factors that led to the rejection of the petition to reschedule:

  1. It’s Actual or Relative Potential Abuse
  2. Scientific Evidence of its Pharmacological Effects, if Known
  3. The State of Current Scientific Knowledge Regarding the Drug or Other Substance
  4. Its History and Current Plan of Abuse
  5. The Scope, Duration, and Significance of Abuse
  6. WHAT, if Any, Risk There Is to the Public Health
  7. Its Psychic or Physiologic Dependence Liability
  8. Whether the Substance Is an Immediate Precursor of a Substance Already Controlled Under This Article

If you would like read the entire document, you can access the report here – Denial of Petition To Initiate Proceedings To Reschedule Marijuana