Dr. Richard B. Friedman is calling on members of Congress to pass the Veterans Medical Marijuana Safe Harbor Act in 2019. New Hampshire legalized medical marijuana in 2013, but the state’s military veterans cannot access it via the Veterans Administration system. Without action by the federal government, veterans must continue to take alternative methods to access this medicine.
VA doctors can’t even discuss medical marijuana with veterans, the Union Leader notes. Veterans that want to use medical marijuana must go to an independent physician to seek a referral. This leaves veterans vulnerable to receiving inadequate care from having to see multiple doctors.
Dr. Friedman suggests that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) should reclassify marijuana in a way that makes it legal to prescribe.
In 2018, New Hampshire reported having 6,480 medical marijuana patients. Dr. Friedman suspects that some veterans are part of that patient number.
Veterans are the most likely group of people to suffer from PTSD. New Hampshire allows for PTSD as a qualifying condition for medical marijuana.
The doctor also comments that marijuana law reform isn’t a partisan issue. He says that the government should make life for veterans easier – not maintain barriers that prevent them from having additional options to treat their varying health conditions.
Dr. Friedman wants Congress to reintroduce the Veterans Medical Marijuana Safe Harbor Act in the 2019 session and get it passed, not only for veterans in his state – but across the United States.