As more research and evidence proves the effectiveness of medical cannabis when it comes to treating a wide array of conditions and diseases, more nurses are necessary to help patients use cannabis in the most appropriate and effective ways.
Continue reading to learn why nurses are vital for the medical cannabis community. And if you want to do your part, consider getting your masters in nursing online from one of the best universities in the country offering RN to MSN programs for medical professionals.
Filling Gaps Between Dispensaries and Patients
One of the main ways that nurses can help the medical cannabis community is by simply serving as professionals working in between the patients themselves and their cannabis dispensaries. Nurses are trained to treat their patients holistically by analyzing the entire picture of an individual’s health, and they are advocates for patients’ rights. They can essentially use this training to help patients get the cannabis that they need for their medical conditions and then use that medical cannabis appropriately for the best results.
Helping Patients Throughout Their Treatment
While doctors might be too busy to stay on top of every patient’s use of medical cannabis, properly trained nurses can follow patients through their entire treatment plans. Nurses can keep track of the things that didn’t work, as well as the things that did work, and they can report these results to a patient’s doctor and discuss making changes to treatment plans.
On top of that, nurses can also help their patients when it comes to navigating the confusing world of medical cannabis, which is constantly changing and evolving. And because medical cannabis doesn’t provide a one-size-fits-all treatment option, a nurse can be there to provide individualized care to each patient, thereby increasing the odds of success.
Ensuring Patient Safety
Nurses who know how cannabis can interact with other medications can ensure that patients will remain safe at all times, and nurses can also educate their patients on how to use cannabis in a way that will be helpful and not harmful. These nurses can also document the positive and negative effects of cannabis use in their patients so that they can report back to research teams and doctors.
The Training That Nurses Need in the Medical Cannabis Community
The main challenge that nurses face when they seek to help patients who wish to use medical cannabis is a lack of training. However, there are options. For example, the American Cannabis Nursing Association, or ACNA, is focused on providing education to both patients and their nurses on the endocannabinoid system, as well as how to therapeutically apply cannabis to specific conditions. The organization’s long-term goal is to give nurses credentials geared towards cannabinoid therapeutics.
There are several great reasons why nurses are vital to the medical cannabis community, and hopefully more nurses will recognize this need and do their part to become properly trained in the use of cannabis for medical purposes. As more patients access cannabis to feel better, nurses will be increasingly necessary to keep these patients safe and healthy.