Marijuana advocates within the medical community say pot should be legalized and given away to senior citizens requiring end of life care.
According to Dr. John Morley, director of geriatrics at St. Louis University, marijuana can be used as treatment for elderly patients in hospice care suffering from a variety of symptoms, including loss of appetite, nausea, pain, anxiety and sadness. He concedes that cannabis could be a powerful alternative to the two FDA-approved drugs currently being used in medical facilities all over the country: Tetrahydrocannibinol, which is an active compound in marijuana, and Dronabinol.
Morley suggests that toking on marijuana is better than ingesting man-made cannabinoid drugs, because synthetics can take over an hour to take effect compared to just a matter of minutes from inhaling smoke.
He adds that in states where medical marijuana is legal, it is being used to comfort dying patients and help them go as peacefully as possible. In fact, one hospice unit in Denver makes pot available to its patients free of charge.
Namaste Hospice, in its drive to provide services to manage symptoms in patients with terminal illness, has elected to offer access to medical cannabis (also known as medical marijuana) to patients who -- based on a physician’s assessment -- medically qualify.
“We founded Namaste with the vision of shifting the paradigm the way the world views serious and life-limiting illness, the process of decline and death itself. We believe that death is not a failure, but that rather living and dying well, on one’s own terms, is an ultimate success,” said Jan Bezuidenhout, President and Founder of Namaste. “One of our guiding principles is patient self-determination, autonomy and choice. To this end Namaste respects the needs and desires of the patient and family before those of the health care system, staff or the organization. If cannabis can help us better manage pain for our patients and at the same time eliminate the negative effects of morphine and similar drugs, then it is our obligation to offer that choice to our patients.”
Mike Adams writes for Playboy's The Smoking Jacket, BroBible and Hustler Magazine. Follow him: @adamssoup; facebook.com/mikeadams73.