Florida Medical Association comes out strongly against Amendment 2

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Representatives of more than 20,000 Florida doctors announced today that they would oppose Amendment 2 – the constitutional amendment seeking to legalize medical marijuana set for the ballot this November.

The Florida Medical Association, by a unanimous vote of the FMA House of Delegates taken during its annual conference in Orlando July 25-26, adopted Resolution 14-301, which restates the group’s disapproval of “any initiative or policy supporting the use of medical marijuana in Florida.”

“Providing compassionate care to our patients is something we do every day,” said FMA President Alan B. Pillersdorf. “We believe the unintended consequences of Amendment 2 are serious and numerous enough for us to believe they constitute a public health risk for Floridians.”

Among the FMA concerns are health hazards of smoking as a means of drug delivery, as well as the dangers of allowing state and local ballot initiatives to approve medicines based on decisions by individuals not qualified to make such conclusions.

“We have come together to reject an Amendment that does not have the proper regulations in place, approves an unsafe method of drug delivery and puts a substance that has drug abuse potential in the hands of Floridians, if approved in November,” Pillersdorf added. “FMA also rejects a process whereby initiatives to approve medicines are decided by methods other than careful science-based review.”

In a statement issued Monday, the FMA stresses that doctors take their oath and obligation to patients seriously. Voters, who need advice on issues of medicine and health care, should use their own doctors as a trusted resource.

“It is with this obligation in mind that the FMA took the action it did in voting unanimously to oppose Amendment 2,” Pillersdorf concluded.

The FMA represents the state’s practicing physicians on issues of legislation and regulatory affairs, medical economics, education, public health, ethical and legal issues; its mission is to enhance the quality and availability of healthcare in Florida.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.