Why Nurses are Vital to the Medical Cannabis Community

Having spent time in and around the medical cannabis community, my experience is that medical cannabis patients not only come from all walks of life and communities, they often come with complex medical histories.  These are patients who have tried everything, ALL of it, meds, surgeries and more meds.  They have reached the end of their traditional therapeutic rope so to speak.  In the days of paper medical charts theirs would be inches thick.  While cannabis certainly has one of the best safety profiles of any medication, it isn’t without the possibility of drug-drug interactions

There are patients who find taking medical cannabis so effective in controlling their symptoms they want to reduce or eliminate other medications.  Some have physicians on board, some don’t.  We’re making great headway but some still feel a stigma or unease about trying medical cannabis and many have not told one of more of their physicians they are using medical cannabis.  These patients often feel lost with no one to turn to for guidance.

Other patients can’t get past the strain names to see how a something with a certain cannabinoid and terpene profile, along with a variety of ingestion methods for ease, discretion & comfort, can help their specific back pain, shoulder pain or nerve issue.  The choices can fast become overwhelming.  If someone like my grandmother walked into a dispensary, looked around and saw the names “Pootie Tang” or “Cherrygasm” without someone to guide her through the process, she’d walk right back out.

Nurses fill those gaps, nurses have those conversations.  We know that once you get past the funny sounding strain names over here, there’s a cream over there that might help your arthritis.  We’ve had some patients speak highly of it, it won’t get you “high” and it helps to loosen up the joints.  There was a recent Gallup poll showing nursing as one of the most trusted professions, again.  The same poll shows those same results every year.  Nurses are patient advocates by nature and training.  Nurses understand what is important to an MS patient, a cancer patient, a PTSD patient, or an arthritis patient because we understand their disease and we’ve heard their story.  Nurses speak patient.  It’s a language, a skill and an art.

I’ve had the privilege of working with some great nurses over the years and one of the top is Ms. Barbara Ochester.  If you have questions about how medical cannabis can fit in your life, you couldn’t be in better hands than Ms Barbara.  She’s been a nurse for over 45 years and is currently on the Board of Directors of the American Cannabis Nurses Association.  If you’ve been to Salvera you’ve probably met Ms. Barbara and you know what I’m talking about.  If you haven’t stopped by what are you waiting for?  If you already know what works for you, that’s terrific, stop by see the shop and tell Ms Barbara something new.