Physicians wrote significantly fewer prescriptions for painkillers and other medications for elderly and disabled patients who had legal access to medical marijuana, a new study finds.

In fact, Medicare saved more than $165 million in 2013 on prescription drugs in the District of Columbia and 17 states that allowed cannabis to be used as medicine, researchers calculated.

If every state in the nation legalized medical marijuana, the study forecast that the federal program would save more than $468 million a year on pharmaceuticals for disabled Americans and those 65 and older.

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Ronnie Cohen ~ Reuters ~

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