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Canadian Public Health Association

Cannabis and Public Health Forum Program

Program subject to change

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Flash your Badge Program

The Flash Your Badge program entitles you and a guest to discounts throughout the city. No need to print the passport, all you have to do is present your delegate badge at participating vendors.

Tuesday 30 April - 9:00-10:30

Equity-informed Approaches to Research and Policy for the Prevention of Problematic Cannabis Use

Room 207

Cannabis and substance use-related behaviours, knowledge, attitudes, values, social norms and beliefs differ according to factors like gender, culture, geography, ethnicity, sexual orientation and stage in the life course. Cannabis-related outcomes are also shaped by the larger historical and social context related to different sub-populations. Research and policy approaches to the prevention of problematic cannabis use often do not account for the diverse identities within the Canadian population, which may create or perpetuate social and health inequities related to problematic cannabis use. During this session, panelists will discuss what is meant by taking a ‘public health approach’ that applies an ‘equity-focused lens’ to preventing problematic cannabis use. Through a series of moderated questions, panelists will be encouraged to illustrate the complexity and intersections of identities that must be accounted for when advancing research and policy related to the prevention of problematic cannabis use, and to highlight challenges and promising practices related to incorporating equity considerations into these research and policy activities.

Speakers:

  • Lorraine Greaves, Clinical Professor, Senior Investigator, Centre for Excellence for Women’s Health, University of British Columbia
  • Akwasi Owusu-Bempah, Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology, University of Toronto
  • François Gagnon, Conseiller scientifique spécialisé, Institut national de santé publique du Québec
  • Frances Elizabeth Moore, Operations & National Outreach Manager, We Matter

Moderator:

  • Stephanie Priest, Executive Director, Mental Health and Wellbeing Division, PHAC

Tuesday 30 April - 10:30 - 11:00

Refreshment Break

Rideau Canal Atrium North

Tuesday 30 April - 11:00-12:30

Oral Presentations 1

Room 201

  • Peel Public Health's Approach to Cannabis Legalization - Sharn Khinda 
  • Non-medical Cannabis Legalization: A Public Health Approach for First Nations Communities in BC - Nel Wieman
  • Examining the location of cannabis dispensaries in Ontario prior to legalization: Association between neighbourhood socioeconomic status and illicit retail locations - Catherine Brown
  • Challenges in Cannabis Legalization, Regulation and Control - Michelle Kilborn
  • Cannabis Law Reform in Canada: The Public Health Approach We Didn't Get - Mike DeVillaer

ORAL PRESENTATIONS 2

Room 203

  • Prenatal exposure to cannabis and child neurodevelopmental outcomes: A population-based cohort study - Daniel Corsi
  • Pourquoi et comment les comestibles du cannabis permettront à l'industrie de développer de nouvelles stratégies de marketing? - Marianne Dessureault
  • Cannabis Informatics Monitoring System (CIMS): Putting Results at your Fingertips - Shawn O’Connor
  • No Ifs, Ands, or Butts (Except in Designated Areas): A Public Health Experience Influencing Public Policy Around Cannabis Consumption - Emily Berrigan
  • Règlements municipaux sur l'usage du cannabis dans les lieux publics extérieurs : réponse de la santé publique en Montérégie - Judith Archambault

Tuesday 30 April - 13:15-13:45

Networking Lunch

Room 207

Poster Presentations

Rideau Canal Atrium North

  • Cannabis packaging, labeling and health warnings: Using the tobacco control literature to address current gaps - Mohammed Al-Hamdani
  • Policy Analysis of Cannabis Sale and Distribution Practices Across Canada - Sawila Bayat
  • Evaluative Conditioning and Approach Bias Modification Training Tasks: A Review of the Literature on Substance Use - Shannon Golsof
  • Are school cannabis policies associated with student engagement in cannabis? - Megan Magier  
  • Carrying High over the Decades: Reanalysis of In Utero Cannabis Exposure on Low Birth Weight - Stephanie Susman
  • A systematic review assessing the impacts of cannabis use on non-traffic injuries – Claire Benny
  • Behavioural economics of cannabis: the impact of price on use of cannabis and alcohol – Kim Crosby
  • Sex, gender and cannabis: a scoping literature review on patterns of cannabis use and health effects – Natalie Hemsing
  • Developing equitable approaches to prevention, harm reduction and the route of administration (ROA): aligning cannabis, tobacco and vaping products – Natalie Hemsing
  • A snapshot of cannabis use and associated and perceived harms among Canadian students, pre-legalization – Sarah Konefal

Tuesday 30 April - 13:45-15:15

Influencing Cannabis Policy Making: A Public Health Approach

Room 201

This session will provide public health professionals an opportunity to gain greater knowledge and skills to improve their potential to influence cannabis policy decision making. Participants will learn about the stages of healthy public policy making as they relate to specific cannabis policy examples, analyze some of the challenges and opportunities that arise when considering municipal cannabis policy options, and explore lessons learned in developing recommendations for decision makers encouraging a public health approach to provincial and municipal legislation and regulations.

Facilitator:

  • Michelle Kilborn

Cannabis Education Toolkit: Connecting Research to Practice in Diverse Settings

Room 203

The Sensible Cannabis Education Toolkit, created by Canadian Students for Sensible Drug Policy (CSSDP), has been promoted across Canada as a pivotal and central resource for those looking to engage in evidence-based cannabis discussions. As our drug-related social contexts continue to shift and evolve, and as the reach of the Toolkit increases, there is a growing appetite to operationalize its key messages in a diversity of settings. The aims of this workshop are two-fold: 1) disseminating strategies for the integration of the Toolkit in a diversity of practical and applied settings and 2) soliciting conference participants’ expertise to gather feedback on how the reach and messaging of the Toolkit can further be improved in order to be applied across diverse contexts. Participants can expect to be both educators and learners in this highly interactive session, as we aim to utilize our collaborative efforts to inform the differing needs of youth across Canada.

Facilitators:

  • Kira London Nadeu
  • Heather D'Alessio

Tuesday 30 April - 15:15-15:30

Refreshment Break

Rideau Canal Atrium North

Tuesday 30 April - 15:30-17:00

Cannabis legalization in Canada and comparisons with US states: Findings from the International Cannabis Policy Study

Room 207

The symposium will present findings from the first wave of the International Cannabis Policy Study (ICPS). Presentations will focus on 1) cannabis prices and purchasing behaviours; 2) patterns of cannabis use and modes of use; 3) indicators of problematic use; and 4) illicit retail sources and cannabis prices before and after legalization. Presentations will examine differences between provinces at baseline, as well as comparisons to US states that have legalized non-medical cannabis. The symposium will discuss implications for specific cannabis policies and evaluating the impact of cannabis legalization in Canada. Participants will be able to use the information presented in the session to learn about the evolving cannabis market and key cannabis use indicators.

Speakers:

  • David Hammond
  • Samantha Goodman
  • Elle Wadsworth

Session chair:

  • Amy Porath

Wednesday 1 May - 9:00-10:30

Oral Presentations 3

Room 201

  • Lower-risk cannabis use guidelines: Navigating between evidence-based research and target audience acceptance - Natalia Gutierrez
  • Toking 9 to 5? Clearing the haze on cannabis consumption and perceptions in the Canadian workplace - Nancy Carnide
  • Daily cannabis use is associated with lower likelihood of daily illicit opioid use among people who use illicit drugs with chronic pain in Vancouver, Canada - Stephanie Lake
  • Evaluating the impact of cannabis to reduce or manage illicit drug use in Vancouver, Canada - Jenna Valleriani
  • Substituting cannabis for alcohol: The impact of legalization - Michelle Thiessen

Oral Presentations 4

Room 203

  • Cognitions Act as Mediators of the Effect of Personality Traits on Adolescent Cannabis Use - Maya Pilin
  • Do School Context and School Connectedness Influence Sex-Related Differences in Cannabis Use of Adolescents? - Laurence Matteau-Peletier
  • Changing Substance Use Norms to Deter Teen Marijuana Use - Tyler Janzen
  • What Lies Ahead in a Legalized Policy Environment? Cannabis Trend Data and Change in Perceptions of Risk between Prince Edward Island (PEI) and Canadian Students - Jo-Ann McDonald
  • Talking Pot with Youth - A Cannabis Communication Guide for Youth Allies - Kiran Somjee

Wednesday 1 May - 10:30-11:00

Refreshment Break

Rideau Canal Atrium North

Wednesday 1 May - 11:00-12:30

Evaluating the potential of cannabis to address the opioid overdose crisis

Room 207

Designing, implementing, evaluating and scaling- up novel public health-based interventions to address the unprecedented numbers of deaths resulting from opioid overdoses is an urgent priority in the United States and Canada. Preliminary findings from the United States have raised the possibility that cannabis might have a beneficial role to play in addressing the overdose crisis. In Vancouver, BC, researchers investigating the role of cannabis in the lives of people who use illicit drugs have found beneficial associations between cannabis use and the likelihood of some drug-related harms. Meanwhile, some community-led interventions are distributing cannabis in the hopes of preventing fatal overdoses in the Downtown Eastside area. 

M-J Milloy will outline the overdose crisis and describe cannabis as a possible harm reduction intervention, summarize preliminary findings to date on cannabis use among people at risk of overdose participating in three ongoing prospective cohorts of people who use illicit drugs in Vancouver, and describe both community-based and clinical research aiming to better understand cannabis as an intervention during a community-wide overdose crisis. Information learned in the session could be used to better understand overdose risk and the possible role of cannabis.

Speaker:

  • M-J Milloy

Wednesday 1 May - 12:30 - 13:15

Networking Lunch

Canada Hall 1

Wednesday 1 May - 13:30-15:00

Cannabis use and aging Canadians: a public health dialogue

Room 201

The Canadian Coalition for Seniors' Mental Health (CCSMH) has been tasked by Health Canada to develop guidelines regarding four substance use disorders (SUDs) in older adults (opioids, cannabis, alcohol, and benzodiazepines). Interdisciplinary working groups collaboratively created guidelines using evidenced-based methods, including AGREE and GRADE.

In this workshop, a brief overview of the issues facing older adults with, or at risk for CUD (Cannabis Use Disorder) will be presented through literature review. Next, the guideline recommendations for cannabis will be presented including prevention, screening, assessment and treatment.

The presentation will conclude with remarks by panelists addressing the relevance of the guidelines for public health practice, policy and research.

Participants will be encouraged to give feedback, and share their experience and ideas for knowledge translation. Physicians, nurse practitioners, counselors, psychologists, researchers, administrators, community senior mental health team members and others caring for older adults are among those encouraged to attend.

Facilitators:

  • Amy Porath
  • Andra Smith
  • Rand Teed

Cannabis and Pregnancy

Room 203

This symposium will review the current state of evidence and on cannabis use pregnancy and breastfeeding women. Data on brain development suggest that prenatal exposure to cannabis may lead to subtle, persistent changes in brain function cognition, well-being and quality of life. These adverse outcomes are significant and it is imperative that healthcare providers have the training and resources to feel confident and competent providing care. Participants will emerge from this session recognizing their unique position to address the enormous gap in research on the safety of cannabis and should consider pursuing and supporting this research. As well, participants will receive guidance, tools and practical wisdom that can be used to effectively manage pregnant women who are consuming cannabis, to promote a healthy pregnancy for pregnant women and their babies. 

Speakers:

  • Jocelyn Cook
  • Jamie Seabrook
  • Lisa Graves

Wednesday 1 May - 15:00-15:30

Refreshment break

Rideau Canal Atrium North

Wednesday 1 May - 15:30-17:00

What Does the Future Hold for Cannabis Research in Canada?

Room 207

Having embarked on an historic transition – legalizing and regulating cannabis after almost 100 years of prohibition – has provided researchers, policy makers, health professionals and business with an equally historic task. Everyone is calling for more information on the impacts of cannabis use. To effectively address this challenge will require leadership and collaboration across jurisdictions, disciplines and sectors. This session will provide delegates the opportunity to be updated on the research agenda in the areas of mental health, public policy and basic science. Panelists will provide an overview of current and future research agendas and delegates will have the opportunity to reflect and provide comment.

Speakers:

  • Nina Cluny, Team Lead, Partnered Initiatives, CIHR Institutes of Neurosciences, Mental Health and Addiction
  • Christopher Canning, Director of Programs and Priorities, Mental Health Commission of Canada
  • Rebecca Jesseman, Director, Policy, Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction

Moderator:

  • David Hammond, Professor, CIHR-PHAC Chair in Applied Public Health, University of Waterloo