Handbook of Drug Control in the United States

By James A. Inciardi | Go to book overview

Appendix E
Federal and State Controlled Substances Acts (CSAs)

THE FEDERAL CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES ACT

Scheduling

The regulatory scheme of the federal controlled substances act classifies substances into five categories, or schedules, to facilitate administration and regulation of the manufacturing, distribution, and dispensing of narcotics and other dangerous drugs without interfering in the legitimate and necessary businesses of doctors, pharmacists, and manufacturers.

The categories are based upon such characteristics of drugs as potential for abuse, accepted medical use, and propensity to create a psychological or physiological dependency for users. Classifications of drugs and periodic updating and re-publication of lists of drugs included in each category are the responsibility of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

Drugs in the most strictly controlled category, listed in schedule I of the classification scheme, have a high potential for abuse, no currently accepted medical use in the United States, and no acceptable safe level of use under medical supervision. Many narcotics, such as heroin and other opiates and opium derivatives, fall into this category. In addition, many hallucinogenic drugs that have no recognized medicinal value in this country, such as marijuana, mescaline, peyote, psilocybin, and lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), are listed in schedule I.

Schedule II drugs have a high potential for abuse, and their use may lead to severe psychological or physiological dependencies; however, they have some

____________________
*
Reprinted from A Guide to State Controlled Substances Acts ( Washington, D.C.: Bureau of Justice Assistance, U.S. Department of Justice, and the National Criminal Justice Association, 1988).

-349-

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