Health

Senate Committee Approves Medical Marijuana For Veterans

| by Michael Allen

Several states have legalized medical marijuana, but cannabis is still classified as a Schedule l drug with no medical benefits by the federal government.

That may change for U.S veterans.

The Senate Appropriations Committee voted on May 21 for an amendment to the defense spending bill that would allow doctors at Veterans Administration facilities to recommend marijuana to vets in states where medical marijuana has been legalized, noted AllGov.com.

The amendment was sponsored by Sen. Steve Daines of Montana, a Republican, and Sen. Jeff Merkley, a Democrat from Oregon.

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Michael Collins, of the Drug Policy Alliance, stated in a press release:

"Veterans in medical marijuana states should be treated the same as any other resident, and should be able to discuss marijuana with their doctor and use it if it’s medically necessary. They have served this country valiantly, so the least we can do is allow them to have full and open discussions with their doctors."

The House of Representatives nixed a proposal like this one last month.

The Washington Post reported in 2014 that possible Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush opposes medical marijuana while other probable and current candidates are showing tepid, limited support.

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According to The Huffington Post earlier this year, a new study at the University of Buffalo's Research Institute on Addictions found that cannabis may be helpful in treating post-traumatic stress disorder, chronic pain and depression.

The Arizona Republic reported in 2014 that a "nationwide survey of 2,089 members of the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America" found that some of the biggest issues were suicide and mental health.

Sources: The Washington Post, AllGov.com, Drug Policy Alliance, The Huffington Post, The Arizona Republic
Image Credit: O'Dea/Wikimedia Commons