I will never forget the first time I tried to become a medical marijuana patient in Oregon. I went to my long time family doctor for an injury and told him that I would rather use medical marijuana to treat my condition, rather than the harmful pain killers he wanted to prescribe me. He got a very sour look on his face and gave me a long winded lecture about lack of research, likelihood of addiction, etc. etc.. The sad irony being that he was trying to push painkillers on me that have literally killed some of my friends who battled an intense addiction to them.
Fortunately, I was able to go to a second doctor in Portland that was willing to do the compassionate thing and sign my paperwork. This is a very common occurrence for people that wish to become medical marijuana patients. It makes me sad that a doctor’s own political beliefs would stand in the way of him or her recommending medical marijuana. But, it happens all to often. That seems to be the case in Illinois, where many doctors refuse to sign their patient’s medical marijuana paperwork. Per Marijuana Business Daily:
The small but slowly growing patient base in Illinois’ medical marijuana program has some businesses concerned, and apparently reluctance on the part of physicians to prescribe MMJ may be partly to blame for the situation.
Despite possibly tens of thousands of potential MMJ patients, a CBS affiliate in Chicago is reporting that hundreds have tried to get recommendations from their doctors for cannabis, only to be turned away.
One example: Out of 1,300 patients seen by Good Intentions, an Illinois MMJ patient consulting services company, roughly 900 have doctors who flat-out refused to write recommendations for medical cannabis.
Doctors are supposed to be smart people. So why do so many refuse to look into the facts? If they did even basic research they would see that marijuana is far, far safer than opiate based painkillers. Doctors hand out those painkillers like they are candy, and don’t think there’s anything wrong with it. But the second someone suggests that they would benefit from medical cannabis they act like the person sitting in their examination room is a total junkie. That’s flat out unacceptable, whether it be in Illinois, Oregon, or anywhere else on the planet. Marijuana is medicine, and a highly effective medicine at that.