Annual Colorado Government Report on Marijuana-related Health Concerns Highlights Several ‘Encouraging Trends’

Feb 02, 2017


The state has experienced a significant drop in ‘marijuana-related’ ER visits, as well as a decrease in marijuana-related poison center calls and unintentional exposures in children

The rate of teen use has not changed since legalization and is nearly identical to the national average, according to ‘the most comprehensive data available’

DENVER — The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment highlighted several “encouraging trends” in its latest annual report on marijuana-related health concerns.

According to the report:

•    “For adults and adolescents, past-month marijuana use has not changed since legalization either in terms of the number of people using or the frequency of use among users.”

•    “Based on the most comprehensive data available, past-month marijuana use among Colorado adolescents is nearly identical to the national average.”

•    “Daily or near-daily marijuana use among adults is much lower than daily or near-daily alcohol or tobacco use. Among adolescents, past month marijuana use is lower than past month alcohol use.”

•    “Marijuana exposure calls to the poison center appear to be decreasing since 2015, including unintentional exposures in children ages 0-8 years.”

•    “The overall rate of emergency department visits with marijuana-related billing codes dropped 27 percent from 2014 to 2015 (2016 data is not available yet).”

•    The estimated percentage of women in Colorado who used marijuana during pregnancy is “not statistically different” from the national average.

Statement from Mason Tvert, the Denver-based director of communications for the Marijuana Policy Project:

“Colorado continues to demonstrate that regulating marijuana works. It is dispelling the myth that the sky will fall if marijuana is made legal for adults. What we are actually seeing is a tightly controlled system of marijuana production and sales that is making our communities safer. We are encouraged by these trends and optimistic about the future of the state, which is setting an example for the rest of the nation. It is clear that prohibition is neither the only way nor the best way to address marijuana-related health concerns. Colorado is taking a more realistic approach, and it is experiencing real results.”

# # #