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Welcome to the first edition of Cannabis Patient Care!
Welcome to the inaugural edition of Cannabis Patient Care—the new medical cannabis-focused publication brought to you by the publishers of Cannabis Science and Technology®. In the few short years that I’ve been entrenched in the cannabis industry one thing has become abundantly clear to me: Patients are finding relief with medical cannabis and passionately driving the science forward. The goal of this new publication is to help educate the key players in medical cannabis: patients, doctors, nurses, pharmacists, caregivers, researchers, and advocates. We plan to highlight a specific disease or condition in each issue for which medical cannabis has been shown to be an effective treatment by sharing patient stories, research updates, and perspectives from the medical community.
The focus of this first edition is post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in veterans and how medical cannabis is being used and studied as a treatment option. In a fortuitous turn of events, I was introduced to Ann Brum of Joint Venture & Co. by a mutual friend toward the end of 2019. Ann passionately shared the work she had been doing with Dr. Marion McNabb of the Cannabis Center of Excellence and Stephen Mandile, a veteran and advocate, to conduct an anonymous study of veterans using cannabis. Their team also hosted a series of local community education events in Massachusetts called the Cannabis Advancement Series. The passion and earnest desire to help the veteran community is clear to anyone who knows Ann, Dr. McNabb, or Stephen, and we are honored and excited to share the work they’ve been doing in this edition along with some of their personal stories. This project has been a true collaboration and I want to thank them tremendously for their time, expertise, and insight.
Our first article in this issue, written by Dr. McNabb, discusses the data from her 2019 Veterans Health and Medical Cannabis Study, which was conducted in partnership with the University of Massachusetts (UMass) Dartmouth. Next, we learn about Stephen’s personal journey to medical cannabis as a treatment for his PTSD and chronic pain after suffering a spinal cord injury during his service in Operation Iraqi Freedom. His story is truly inspiring!
On the medical side, Dr. Staci Gruber, the Director of Marijuana Investigations for Neuroscientific Discovery (MIND) at McLean Hospital, shared her interest in medical cannabis. Dr. Gruber and her team at MIND are conducting fascinating research in medical cannabis focusing on veterans and other areas.
In another article, Tracey Gregory, RN, shares her unique perspective as a hospice nurse working with veterans and how she has seen medical cannabis offer them comfort and relief.
Rounding out this special first edition are the stories of a Veteran Affairs (VA) caregiver—Jamie Pascua—offering support to her veteran husband and that of two advocates—Ann Brum and Wayne Smith—whose passion for educating their communities and changing legislation for veterans to have access to cannabis is beyond impressive.
The term personalized medicine gets tossed around a lot, but I think it’s important to understand that there is real meaning behind it and a focus on the individual patient. The people that use medical cannabis have amazing stories to share and those stories are shaping the future of access for the patients that come after them. Veterans hold a special place in our society as those who are willing to sacrifice themselves for the greater good and protection of our country. It’s imperative that we offer them the best options for their care—whatever that may be. I am honored to present this special first edition of Cannabis Patient Care focused on veterans. I hope everyone reading this takes away something special from the veterans, researchers, advocates, and medical professionals that are working so hard to make a difference in this community—I know I certainly have and I thank each of them for sharing their stories and work with us.
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Cannabis Patient Care