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US Veteran’s Battle: Get VA to Accept Marijuana for PTSD Treatment

Mike Krawitz, 56, is a disabled US Air Force veteran who believes in medical cannabis’ ability to save lives by keeping people off the drugs with dangerous and deadly side effects — primarily opioids.

Krawitz believes there is a correlation between the amount of opioid prescriptions and suicides among veterans.

“The scientific community has confirmed that cannabis saves lives by preventing overdoses. VA [Veterans Administration] doctors know this but are obliged not to recommend cannabis for pain and PTSD. And that’s unethical. .  

And while the amount of drug overdoses among veterans is not clear, the high quantity of veterans taking their own lives is enough for veterans like Krawitz to fight for alternative treatments.

To Krawitz, the amount of lives lost to overdoses and suicides feels similar to casualties during wartime.

“We ought to run a body count ticker from the media, like they do in times of war, to maintain a running count of the numbers of veterans who commit suicide,” Krawitz suggested.

This is the motivation behind Krawitz’s push for secure cannabis access alongside like-minded advocates with Veterans for Medical Cannabis accessibility , an organization committed to protecting veterans’ rights to safe and legal access to cannabis treatments, as its executive director.

And while Krawitz notes the VA isn’t in a simple position, saying that the “VA doctors may be allowed more breathing room in a legal medical marijuana state, but they’re afraid to run afoul of the federal government,” he stands by his position that the VA should be contributing to medical cannabis research instead of “ritually dumping deadly medications on vets that are killing them.

Fortunately, there is movement in that area.

The analysis is part of the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS).

While the triple-blind research has FDA approval, it’s getting no support from the VA..

“We could have completed this study probably a year ago if we had the cooperation of the Phoenix VA,” Dr. Sisley told Phoenix television channels KPHO and KTVK on May 10, 2018. .

Meanwhile, veterans groups throughout the country are building alliances to end cannabis prohibition so as to enable research and save lives.

Physicians for Cannabis Regulation (DFCR), established in 2016, is the first and only federal doctors ’ association in the nation to endorse medical cannabis. The California Medical Association was the first to do this on a state level.

“Before we found, physicians were reluctant to publicly voice their opposition to the war on cannabis out of fear they’d be viewed as condoning recreational marijuana use and violating their moral responsibility to ‘do no harm,’” DFCR founder and board President Dr. David Nathan told “But what’s legal is not always ethical and I’d rather get in trouble for doing what’s right.

And while the tide slowly begins to turn, based on Krawitz, veterans are still subject to drug tests by the VA.. Those found to have cannabis in their systems may be “punished” by having their prescription pain medications withheld by VA doctors.

On a day meant to honor the women and men who sacrificed their lives in the line of duty, Krawitz  said the VA unjustly denies veterans access to safer medicinal services.

“The VA should protect us, not punish us,” said Krawitz.

Published at Mon, 28 May 2018 16:00:12 +0000

Posted in: News

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