RN role and Cannabis

  1. What is the role of the RN in a Medical Marijuana clinic? Please mention what state you are in. Thanks.
    Last edit by ColdHandsWarmHeart on Apr 15, '17 : Reason: Typo
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    Joined: Apr '12; Posts: 24; Likes: 26


  3. by   tragicallyhip
    Hi I am researching this as well. In another post "http://allnurses.com/nursing-patient-medications/medical-marijuana-role-851235.html" they ask this question as well. I posted a comment and would like feedback from RNs working in the industry already about what they are doing currently. So far in my own research I have accumulated links etc to reference. Here is my own info that I have gleaned so far in exploring the issue:

    Just a note as well. I see patients one on one for lifestyle management of cardiometabolic syndrome and it's associated issues:I have countless seniors who had severe diabetic neuropathy and finally have a solution. Many find the drops of certain strains/compounds under the tongue very helpful. They help with sleep and consequently are able to better manage pain.

    Our Canadian Nurses Association is working hard to de-stigmatize Cannabis for the purpose of supporting patients with cancer, fibromyalgia, diabetes, autoimmune inflammation, etc who find relief from this complex plant with over 140 compounds and counting. I will add links to this post from their webinar.

    I will also add a link from the Academy of Medicine and Science with a free comprehensive PDF book on all the data and studies done so far on Cannabis. There are RNs working in dispensaries whose focus is medicinal use. Other dispensaries are tailored for recreational use, much like liquor stores.

    RN roles thus far, are not prescribing in Canada but examining patient profiles. For example. patient A comes in with list of medications and conditions, any interacting medications or conditions such as psychiatric (bipolar etc) are automatically flagged and the patient must get a letter from their specialist or doctor before obtaining Cannabis. This is much less interaction with a patient than happens at safe injection sites here in Canada. The nurse does not recommend, counsel, or give any advice on cannabis.

    Canadian NPs may be able to start prescribing it when legislation is passed.

    I would also recommend looking at the TED talk from Portugal and what they have done to reduce addiction and use dramatically in their country. They have one of the highest success rates in the world when it comes to addiction.

    What I find is that there is a lot of moral judgement and nurses are supposed to be critical thinkers that put one's one morals/beliefs aside and think as evidenced based practitioners. So far I have seen emotional responses to this topic rather than informed and critical thinking based. (Cannabis: the evidence)

    If patients sense judgement they will not reveal anything to nurses and this does nothing to reduce harm. I used to be in the "judgment group" and I have completely with education and research turned my views 180 degrees. I will include a number of links that may be of help. Some reference Safe Injection site documents which may help understand harm reduction. Although, of note, obviously Cannabis is not an opiate but I think it is worth considering since it is still under schedule 1.

    Canadian Nurses Association on Cannabis: Cannabis in Canada: Implications for nursing in a changing legal and health-care landscape - YouTube

    National Academy of Science and Medicine, see pdf link for free: Front Matter | The Health Effects of Cannabis and Cannabinoids: The Current State of Evidence and Recommendations for Research | The National Academies Press
    National Academy of Science and Medicine home page: Error Page 44 File Not Found | National-Academies.org | Where the Nation Turns for Independent, Expert Advice
    Health Care Professionals | MedicalCannabis.com

    A collection of nurses who work with patients and cannabis. Green Health Consultants | Medical Cannabis Treatment Plans
    Harm reduction: 404 - File or directory not found.
    Harm reduction: https://www.arnbc.ca/pdfs/policies-a...tion-Sites.pdf
    Harm reduction: Page not found | Canadian Drug Policy Coalition

    Canadian Federal Laws: Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulations
    Google Scholar: nurses/gps and cannabis: https://substanceabusepolicy.biomedc...1747-597X-7-31
    Books: Google Books
    Nursing Attitudes and patients: Wolters Kluwer Health

    Okay, I hope this helps others. I have read some of the negative comments that were not constructive and showed moral and emotional based judgement rather than examining it with an eye for evidence based decisions. We are a profession that must look at things from a scientific, ethical, holistic based mind. We must look at what other countries have found successful. So far, North America has failed in their war on drugs.

    Another author who has written extensively on addictions is Dr. Gabor Mate. He has many videos online as well has his books. He has worked for years in the Vancouver downtown core with those who struggle with substance use. At the core of the problem is trauma and psychiatric illnesses.
    See Ted talks:
    TED | 44: Not Found

    TED | 44: Not Found

    TED | 44: Not Found

    A counter argument to Johann Harris talk but...with a response from the author at the bottom who clarifies: https://www.thefix.com/content/4-thi...bout-addiction
  4. by   CannabisNurseHeather
    supports & develops Cannabis Nurse Entrepreneurs.
  5. by   traumaRUs
    In IL, there are cannabis dispensaries. There are no medical professionals on site at all.