Pot over prescriptions

Rachelle Lupton

The University of British Columbia and the University of Victoria recently followed 250 patients who were being treated for conditions such as chronic pain, mental health and gastrointestinal issues. Patients were prescribed medical marijuana as well as more established pharmaceutical drugs such as opioids, sedatives and antidepressants. 63% of these patients reported using medical cannabis over more “traditional” drugs due to the adverse side-effects that come with many pharmaceuticals.


Philippe Lucas, graduate researcher at the Centre for Addictions Research of British Columbia, said that the second reason patients were choosing to switch to medical cannabis is that they felt it was safer and they experienced better symptom management.


““There’s no risk for addiction or overdose, and therefore there’s no mortality issue when it comes to cannabis.” - Lucas


Lucas argues that insurance plans should increase their coverage to include medical marijuana  as there are significant health cost savings associated with using medical cannabis as an alternative to some of today's pricey pharmaceuticals.


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