presented by alpha veteran
Medical cannabis vs. opioids
Like any other medicine, cannabis is not a solution for everyone. But for many, cannabis is a conservative alternative to chronic pain medications. Chronic pain is the main reason people push for medical assistance. Chronic pain affects more people than diabetes, heart disease and cancer combined.
Opioid prescriptions such as OxyContin, Vicodin, Percocet and Fentanyl are more common than cannabis. Opioid use is out of control in Canada and the United States. Between January 2016 and June 2018, more than 9,000 people in Canada died of opioid overdose, and more people continue to fight opioid addiction and abuse.
Although more research is needed, we know that cannabis is effective in treating chronic pain. Studies show that cannabis can be used as a substitute for opiates and could even improve the effect of opioid medications when used together.
Veterans Affairs Canada and the Blue Cross
Veterans Affairs Canada and the Blue Cross plays a leading role in the management of medical coverage in Canada.
Medavie Blue Cross, one of Canada's leading providers of non-profit health insurance, administers health programs on behalf of VAC. Even though everyone's cardholder benefits differ, medical coverage of cannabis is possible. Nearly 7,300 veterans have been reimbursed for their medical cannabis fees in 2018.
Although VAC has set a daily limit of 3 grams per patient for health reasons and to keep costs down, Medavie Blue Cross allows exceptions for more than one in five veterans, offering coverage of more than 3 grams per day.