DES MOINES, Iowa — The Iowa Board of Pharmacy took action Tuesday by making marijuana a drug with medicinal purposes.
The Board of Pharmacy agreed to re-classify marijuana from a schedule one to schedule two drug.
The new classification by the board means is that marijuana still has a high potential for abuse, but is now considered to have accepted medical use in treatment.
Previously as a schedule one drug, marijuana would have no proven or acceptable medical use.
This will now classify marijuana with other narcotic drugs such as opiates and methadone.
But that was the extent of the board’s action. Members denied a petition requesting the board to make rules on the use of marijuana.
Board chair Vernon Benjamin said that goes beyond the scope of the board’s rule-making authority.
Benjamin said the board can regulate drugs and professional pharmacists, but then put the responsibility back on the Iowa Legislature.
“We can’t set any penalties. We can’t set any guidelines on how marijuana’s going to be produced, what standards are going to be. And I think all those kind of things are things the legislature’s going to have the ultimate say-so about anyway,” said Benjamin.
Benjamin said the likelihood that the Legislature would take up the issue in the upcoming session, from what he’s heard, are slim, but he added that anything can happen during the legislative session.