Driving and Medical Marijuana Study Top Priority To Colorado DoH
The Colorado DOH grants $2.35 million to study health and safety of marijuana — the grant will fund seven studies. More than half of the grant money, about $1.7 million, will go to several studies on how marijuana affects driving.
This is the second round of awards from marijuana-related tax funds authorized by the Colorado Legislature. Each awardee went through a review and scoring process; the seven were chosen from 58 initial applications.
The three-year study on driving impairment in regards to marijuana will look at the impairment of occasional marijuana users versus impairment in heavy marijuana users. The study will be conducted at Colorado School of Public Health, they’ve been awarded an $843,500 grant from the state to fund the study.
Marijuana and DUI’s
Marijuana’s effect on driving is at this point, impossible to quantify, primarily because there isn’t a reliable roadside test for it. Right now if you’re suspected of driving high, you can be charged with a DUI without roadside testing. The legal limit for THC is currently 5 nanograms per milliliter of blood.
The studies focused on driving impairment have received full research grants. Colorado will fund the studies with up to $300,000 per year for up to three years. The other five are pilot grants that the state will fund up to $100,000 per year for one or two years. There will be a study done on how long marijuana remains in breast milk, one on how marijuana and geriatric care, and one on the cardiovascular risks of marijuana.
“This research will be invaluable in Colorado and across the country,” Dr. Larry Wolk, department executive director and chief medical officer, said in a statement announcing the grants. “The findings will inform our public education efforts and give people additional information they need to make decisions about marijuana use.”