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Massachusetts public health chief to step down after finalizing regulations for medical marijuana

Ross Cronkrite | Science Recorder | April 07, 2013

Massachusetts public health chief to step down after finalizing regulations for medical marijuana

Has Dr. Lauren Smith done a good job as Massachusetts’ health commissioner?

Dr. Lauren Smith, interim commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH), will step down in May after finalizing regulations for medical marijuana, reports The Associated Press. Smith faced a number of challenges during her short tenure, including a nationwide fungal meningitis outbreak that was linked to a Framingham compounding pharmacy.

In an email obtained by Boston.com, Dr. Smith told her staff that “the last several months have been difficult for DPH and for those of us that care deeply about this agency’s work in public health.” Though she offered no specific reason for leaving, she said that she would be taking some time to “catch [her] breath” before moving on to her next role.

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