Legislators Introduce Bill to Allow Veterans Prescribed Med Marijuana
U.S. Sens. Brian Schatz (D-Hawai‘i) and Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) introduced legislation this week to allow doctors at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to prescribe medical marijuana to veterans in the 31 states that have established medical marijuana programs.
In addition to creating a temporary, five-year safe harbor protection for veterans who use medical marijuana, the bill would also direct the VA to research how medical marijuana could help veterans better manage chronic pain and reduce opioid abuse.
“In the 31 states where medical marijuana is legal, patients and doctors are able to see if marijuana helps with pain management,” Sen. Schatz said. “Our veterans deserve to have that same chance. This bill does right by our veterans, and it can also shed light on how medical marijuana can help with the nation’s opioid epidemic.”
The bill is supported by the American Academy of Pain Medicine, Veterans Cannabis Project, Veterans for Medical Cannabis Access, Americans for Safe Access, NORML, Marijuana Policy Project, Drug Policy Alliance, Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies, Veterans Cannabis Coalition and National Cannabis Industry Association.
Download a copy of the bill here.