With legalization approaching in October 2018, many medicinal patients are wondering if they should remain a patient, or try their luck exploring recreational cannabis. We compiled a list of the top 3 reason why we believe the medicinal market is a necessity for many Canadians and in many cases, the best way to go.
1. Budtenders are not Doctors
Retail cannabis workers (commonly referred to as “budtenders”) are not legally allowed to make any medical recommendations. This means that when you visit your local dispensary, a budtender cannot make a recommendation to help with, for example, chronic pain or reducing anxiety. Our physicians take a lengthy medical history of each of our patients, ensuring proper dosage and potential issues such as medication interactions can be monitored. Navigating the world of licensed producers can be very daunting, to say the least! Most medical cannabis clinics have physicians as well as patient educators to help patients choose the right licensed producer to fit their need, prescription and budget.
2. Medicinal Cannabis is a Medical Expense
Everyone’s favorite time of year, tax season! Many patients who turn to medicinal cannabis for relief are suffering from severe ailments, and with severe ailments, comes severe medical bills. Medical bills can include everything from assisted breathing devices to ambulance rides, not to mention the potential loss of income, or expenses incurred from extended hospital stays.
With a cannabis prescription, patients can claim their prescription costs as a medical expense. All you need to qualify is a receipt and for the cannabis product to have been purchased from a Licensed Producer. One less thing to worry about and some added piece of mind on your journey to a healthy life! It’s also worth noting that some insurance companies are now accepting cannabis as an extended health benefit. That means in some cases you can utilize a health care spending account for your cannabis needs.
3. Medicinal Cannabis For Veterans
The Government of Canada and Veteran Affairs covers the cost of medicinal cannabis for veterans who served in the Canadian Armed Forces. More than 63 percent of Veterans receiving opioid treatment for chronic pain also have a mental health diagnosis. The studies of post-traumatic stress disorder and cannabis are young, but show promise; with legalization comes the ability to further the research. Not only is cannabis an option worth considering to manage these ailments, but cannabis can also aid in managing any unwanted side effects from heavy, habit-forming opioid prescriptions, often used in treating chronic pain. Cannabis has proven a useful tool in providing relief and these programs are put in place to help veterans get the medicine they need at an affordable price, with the proper attention, care, and education that they deserve. Some Canadian licensed producers, like Organigram, will even submit your application into veterans affairs for you.
Cannabis is still an emerging medicine, and we are learning more about it every day. For those who are actively searching, learning and exploring medicinal cannabis, the benefits of sticking with medicinal cannabis are clear. Whether it is compassionate pricing, tax breaks, or just the guidance of a physician, medicinal cannabis is world’s away from recreational cannabis. The support and knowledge provided by the medicinal cannabis community can help you treat your ailments while reducing the risks typically associated with misusing any type of medication.