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Health department survey shows big patient benefits from Minnesota medical marijuana program

The manufacturers might be losing money, but the medical marijuana program is working for patients. MPR reports: “Most Minnesotans who took part in the launch year of the state’s medical marijuana program reported ‘substantial benefits’ from treatment, including minimal side effects and no serious consequences, the state Health Department said Tuesday. …  ‘In the area of symptom reduction, patients achieved at least a 30 percent reduction in symptoms (an amount considered clinically meaningful) for conditions including seizures, Tourette syndrome, Crohn’s disease and muscle spasms,’ the agency said in a statement.”

Temporary means temporary, apparently. MPR’s Emma Sapong reports: “On Sunday, between 200 and 500 people living in Minnesota are expected to lose the temporary protected status they were granted when Ebola ravaged three West African countries. … That’s according to Abdullah Kiatamba, executive director of African Immigrant Services in Brooklyn Park, Minn., who along with other immigration leaders is calling the termination premature. … Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone are still reeling from the aftermath of Ebola, he said, and it will take them years to recover.”

Meet the thorn in the side of UnitedHealth. The New York Times’ Mary Williams Walsh reports: “In the first interview since his allegations were made public, the whistle-blower, Benjamin Poehling of Bloomington, Minn., described in detail how his company and others like it — in his view — gamed the system: Finance directors like him monitored projects that UnitedHealth had designed to make patients look sicker than they were, by scouring patients’ health records electronically and finding ways to goose the diagnosis codes. … In February, a federal judge unsealed the lawsuit that Mr. Poehling filed against UnitedHealth and 14 other companies involved in Medicare Advantage.”

Yanez trial update. The Star Tribune’s Chao Xiong reports: “A Ramsey County District Court judge on Tuesday morning denied several key requests from Jeronimo Yanez’s defense attorneys in the fatal shooting of Philando Castile. Yanez cannot re-enact the shooting in the presence of Castile’s car while jurors watch and defense attorneys cannot question the honesty of Castile’s girlfriend regarding an unrelated assault case against her. … One of Yanez’s three attorneys, Earl Gray, said despite some setbacks, the defense is ready for Yanez’s May 30 trial.

In other news…

Psst, they’re actually two cities: “10th Annual American Fitness Index Reveals Minneapolis-St. Paul as the Newest “Fit City”” [Newswise]

Unexpected: “Twin Cities Best Middle Eastern Chef Sameh Wadi Takes Over Seven” [Mpls St Paul]

Cue pitchforks: “Spotted: Minneapolis ‘tiny door’ vandal apparently caught in the act” [City Pages]

People are still playing Pokemon Go: “Is Minneapolis the best place in the world to play Pokemon Go?” [City Pages]

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Comments (1)

  1. Submitted by Steven James Beto on 08/04/2017 - 09:12 am.

    Access to Medical Marijuana

    It does not appear that Minnesota is serious about its legalization of medical marijuana. There are too few clinics where medical marijuana can be obtained and no clear way of knowing who they are or how to contact them is provided. I am a veteran with a 30% anxiety due to PTSD disability and have read encouraging reports on how medical marijuana might help. Which St. Paul clinic provides medical marijuana (Why only 1?) and how do I contact it?

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