Victory for Vets

A Victory for Vets!

A directive from Veterans Affairs has restored full citizenship to U.S. veterans.  The directive provides for veterans in 14 states to enjoy the benefit of using medical marijuana.
This changes the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy many Veterans Affairs doctors have had to live under, where their patients were legally using cannabis for pain, nausea, and the anxiety and sleeplessness of PTSD.  
Previously, the VA had stood with Federal law against the right for patients to choose to use cannabis.  In practice, this meant that VA doctors and their patients couldn’t discuss medical cannabis in the course of treatment, even when the doctors understood that patients were getting benefit from cannabis use.  It was a “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy.

"If Cannabis were unknown, and bio-prospectors were suddenly to find it in some remote mountain crevice, its discovery would no doubt be hailed as a medical breakthrough. Scientists would praise its potential for treating everything from pain to cancer, and marvel at its rich pharmacopoeia - many of whose chemicals mimic vital molecules in the human body."
- "Reefer Madness, Marijuana Is Medically Useful Whether Politicians Like It or Not," The Economist, April 29, 2006   

The VA’s new directive means that, not only can patients use medical cannabis in states where it is legal, but the treatment plan can be changed to reflect the use of the drug.  The VA won’t help a veteran obtain medical cannabis, but it will allow patients and doctors to speak honestly.

The Directive states in part:

“VHA policy does not prohibit Veterans who use medical marijuana from participating in VHA substance abuse programs, pain control programs, or other clinical programs where the use of marijuana may be considered inconsistent with treatment goals. Although patients participating in state medical marijuana programs must not be denied VHA services, modifications may need to be made in their treatment plans. Decisions to modify treatment plans in those situations are best made by individual providers in partnership with their patients. VHA endorses a step-care model for the treatment of patients with chronic pain: any prescription(s) for chronic pain should be managed under the auspices of such programs described in VHA policy regarding Pain Management.”
Full Text HERE 

This is a victory for our citizens who, after all, gave something in defense of the individual freedoms which make our country unique in the world.
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