V.A. Comes up with New Policy for Veterans
Veterans Affairs doctors may finally be closer to recommending cannabis for the veteran patients who are looking for relief.
According to Forbes, doctors still cannot recommend medical cannabis, but they are now able to talk more openly about the alternative with their patients.
A new directive from the V.A. states that doctors can “discuss with the Veteran marijuana use, due to its clinical relevance to patient care, and discuss marijuana use with any Veterans requesting information about marijuana.” However, actually recommending cannabis officially is still illegal. The policy reminds doctors that “to comply with Federal laws such as the Controlled Substances Act…providers are prohibited from completing forms or registering Veterans for participation in a State-approved marijuana program.”
Although V.A. Sec. David Shulkin has repeatedly tried to dodge the issue of seniors and cannabis use, he stated during a White House briefing that states with medical cannabis are showing there could be “some evidence that this is beginning to be helpful, and we’re interested in looking at that and learning from that.” But he added that “until time the federal law changes, we are not able to be able to prescribe medical marijuana for conditions that may be helpful.”
While this is just a small step forward for the V.A. and veterans’ access, it still represents a milestone for those looking to be able to use cannabis as medicine.