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WHO Concludes Scheduling of CBD ‘Not Justified’

Written by Cara Wietstock

WHO will re-evaluate current scheduling of CBD after a committee meeting.

Last November, the World Health Organization (WHO) held the thirty-ninth meeting of the Expert Committee on Drug Dependence (ECDD). The committee met to discuss the current scheduling of sixteen drugs that call for a re-evaluation. Cannabidiol (CBD) was among the drugs discussed by this committee last month. The committee meets yearly November 6 to 10th in Switzerland to review substances and make scheduling recommendations to the United Nations Security-General. Now the committee has released their findings from this year, and they recommend that Cannabidiol may not be subject to scheduling at all which means CBD could be deemed as legal.

A statement from the WHO committee calls for more scientific evidence and further review of CBD in 2018, “There is increased interest from Member States in the use of cannabis for medical indications including for palliative care. Responding to that interest and increase in use, WHO has in recent years gathered more robust scientific evidence on the therapeutic use and side effects of cannabis and cannabis components. To that end, the ECDD did an initial review of a cannabis compound called cannabidiol (CBD).”

Under the United Nations Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs (1961) and the United Nations Convention on Psychotropic Substances (1971) WHO provides technical expertise to the United Nations on drugs of abuse. The WHO provides advice and guidance on the scheduling of substances using medical and scientific evaluations of the dependence-producing properties of substances.

“Recent evidence from animal and human studies shows that its use could have some therapeutic value for seizures due to epilepsy and related conditions. Current evidence also shows that cannabidiol is not likely to be abused or create dependence as for other cannabinoids (such as Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), for instance). The ECDD, therefore, concluded that current information does not justify scheduling of cannabidiol and postponed a fuller review of cannabidiol preparations to May 2018, when the committee will undertake a comprehensive review of cannabis and cannabis-related substances,” the WHO statement concluded.

The ECDD plans to discuss the CBD further when they meet again in May of 2018 according to a report from the Cannabist. An evaluation of the cannabis plant and its components is already on the schedule for this meeting. It is rumored that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and U.S. Health and Human Services agencies are monitoring the outcome of the ECDD before making their own recommendations for rescheduling cannabis and cannabis resins.

About the author

Cara Wietstock

Cara began working in the retail cannabis industry of San Francisco, CA in 2011 and continued in that sector for years. In 2015 she dedicated herself to writing full-time. Her passion for the written word and deep respect for the healing properties of the plant have brought her to Terpenes and Testing magazine. She now helps keep us on the cutting edge of scientific cannabis discovery as the Editor-in-Chief of the print publication.

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