Report Highlights Pot Use in Massachusetts
A statewide study of marijuana use among Massachusetts residents released last week found that about 21 percent of adults had used marijuana in the past 30 days and that the proportion of marijuana use was highest among 18-to-25 year-olds.
The study, conducted by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH), was mandated by the Legislature as part of its revisions to the 2016 adult-use marijuana law. The purpose of the study was to investigate the patterns of use, methods of consumption, and general perceptions of marijuana; incidents of impaired driving and hospitalization related to marijuana use; and the economic and fiscal impacts for state and local governments.
“The study establishes a baseline measurement of how marijuana is used and how that affects public health, public safety, and potential revenue in the state before adult-use marijuana becomes widely available,” said Marc A. Nascarella, Ph.D., the study’s Principal Investigator at DPH. “We were fortunate to have the opportunity to work with an exceptional group of collaborators – from academic researchers and private researchers to state agency experts in this multiyear investigation.”
Among the study’s other highlights:
Smoking is the most common method of marijuana consumption, although more than 40 percent of marijuana users report using multiple methods of use. More than half of adults perceive marijuana to have slight or no risks and use marijuana for non-medical purposes. A survey of patients who use marijuana products for medical use suggests that the average person uses marijuana 24 days a month, with the majority using marijuana products for at least 21 out of the past 30 days.
Among respondents that use marijuana, 34.3 percent reported driving under the influence. Overall, 7.2 percent of the adult population drove under the influence of marijuana in the past 30 days, and 11.3 percent