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Doctors Urge Child-Resistant Packaging For Pot Edibles

DENVER (CBS4)– Doctors are urging child-resistant packaging for pot edibles as recreational marijuana use grows in Colorado with the passage of Amendment 64.

A warning from the Rocky Mountain Poison Control Center has raised concerns- since Amendment 64 passed the number of calls about overexposure of pot with children and adults has doubled.

Poison control experts are urging parents with marijuana edibles in their homes to not keep it in common household areas like the pantry, on counters or in reachable spaces and drawers.

Doctors are urging parents and caregivers to use child resistant bags for marijuana-infused edibles like popcorn, cotton candy, cookies, brownies and suckers.

“As you can imagine they are very palatable, very attractive to kids. They taste like they should, a brownie or a cookie,” said Children’s Hospital pediatrician Dr. George Sam Wang.

Wang said since 2009 the hospital has seen a spike in children under the age of five being treated in the emergency room because of edibles.

“They come in very sleepy and potentially can go into a coma or have difficulty breathing,” said Wang.

Edibles typically contain high doses of marijuana’s active ingredient, THC.

Wang teamed with Dr. Michael Kosnett, both affiliated with the Rocky Mountain Poison Control Center, to urge the need for child-resistant packaging to the governor’s marijuana task force.

“What makes it child resistant is that it requires two specific acts, you have to pinch then pull it open,” said Kosnett.

The package recommended by Kosnett is approved by the Consumer Product Safety Commission as child resistant. There are other kinds of packaging found online.

Kosnett and Wang believe marijuana edible packaging should be no different than safety caps that were mandated for medication bottles in the 1970s.

“After child-resistant packaging was used for medicines the incidents of poisoning fell drastically, in some cases 50 to 90 percent,” said Kosnett. “The best way to deal with a potential poisoning product is to prevent it.”

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