Friday, February 24, 2012

STUDY: "Do Medical Marijuana Laws Increase Marijuana Use?"

By David Downs
Fri, Feb 24, 2012 at 11:19 AM


"CONCLUSION: Accounting for confounding by unmeasured state characteristics and measurement error had an important effect on estimates of the impact of MMLs on marijuana use. We find limited evidence of causal effects of MMLs on measures of reported marijuana use." — from "Do Medical Marijuana Laws Increase Marijuana Use? Replication Study and Extension", published in the Annals of Epidemiology.

The purpose of the study was to "replicate a prior study that found greater adolescent marijuana use in states that have passed medical marijuana laws (MMLs), and extend this analysis by accounting for confounding by unmeasured state characteristics and measurement error."

The results: "We replicated previously published results showing higher marijuana use in states with MMLs. Difference-in-differences estimates suggested that passing MMLs decreased past-month use among adolescents by 0.53 percentage points (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.03-1.02) and had no discernible effect on the perceived riskiness of monthly use. Models incorporating measurement error in the state estimates of marijuana use yielded little evidence that passing MMLs affects marijuana use."

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