In a landmark decision, the U.S. Senate Committee have taken a major step forward in furthering medical marijuana access for veterans and research into psychedelics, as well as hemp genetics innovation. This is a major development in the current era that will bring about much needed relief, insight, and progress.
1. Senate Steps In to Improve Medical Marijuana Access for Vets
The Senate recently made a significant move to improve access to medical marijuana for veterans. With an overwhelming bipartisan vote of 86-11, the Senate passed the Veterans Equal Access Act, which will lift Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) restrictions that prevent VA health care providers from providing services related to medical marijuana in states where it’s legal.
The bill was championed by Sens. Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and Steve Daines (R-MT) and will now be presented to the House of Representatives for consideration. If the House passes the bill, it would be an incredible step forward in giving veterans more access to medical treatment options, especially since we owe so much to them. It would also allow veterans to seek an alternative to opioids that is considered to be far less addictive and damaging.
The bill would:
- Eliminate the current legal prohibitions that stand in the way of VA health care providers discussing or recommending medical marijuana
- Allow veterans—in states where it is legal—to discuss medical marijuana options with their VA health care providers
- Allow VA health care providers to issue medical marijuana recommendations to veterans under certain conditions
- Give veterans the freedom to make the choices they see fit instead of depending on limited treatments
Most importantly, the measure would give our nation’s veterans the ability to use their VA medical care—the same medical care everyone else gets—and benefit from medical marijuana treatments.
2. Compassionate Care: Psychedelics Research Expanded
For decades, scientists and researchers have been using psychedelics as powerful tools in the field of psychology. Psychologists have found that psychedelics have the power to help treat various mental health issues, such as depression, anxiety and PTSD. Today, the use of psychedelics in clinical settings is being expanded to include therapeutic and healing approaches.
Compassionate Care: Through the research conducted, it is becoming increasingly clear that psychedelics have powerful healing potential, which could be harnessed to help individuals suffering from various psychological conditions. By integrating psychedelics into compassionate care, researchers can create a more individualized approach to running clinical trials on a range of disorders. This could include reducing traumatic memories, reducing anxiety, and improving emotional regulation. The potential benefits of using psychedelics as a tool for compassionate care could have a profound impact on people’s lives and open up novel treatments in mental health.
- The potential healing capacity of psychedelics offers the promise of therapeutic and healing approaches to mental health issues.
- Expanded research into psychedelics in clinical settings will allow for a more individualized approach to treating psychological disorders.
- Harmonizing psychedelic therapy with compassionate care may provide relief to individuals suffering from mental health issues.
3. A Step Towards Progress: Investing in Hemp Genetic Innovation
The potential of hemp is vast – from its function as a key ingredient in a range of products to its capacity to sequester carbon and improve soil. To fulfill its potential, investing in hemp genetic innovation is essential. As a result, many industry players are now turning their attention to new genetics and breeding technology.
The first step in hemp genetic innovation is research. Researchers have identified certain varieties of hemp that are more suitable for producing specific products. This process of discovery is an important tool in the creation of new varieties and products that are better adapted to different cultivation conditions and markets. Additionally, data from ongoing research helps breeders experiment and push the boundaries of what’s possible.
Investing in new genetics comes with numerous potential benefits:
- High-yielding and resilient varieties
- Faster growing cycles
- Increased cannabinoid content
- Reduced disease risk
Furthermore, to fully realize these benefits, industry players must collaborate. Through open-source genetic development initiatives, researchers and breeders can swap and share valuable knowledge that can help scale up hemp production across multiple regions.
4. An Opportunity for Positive Change: Senate Issues Directives on Medical Marijuana Access For Veterans
The US Senate has responded to decades of research and advocacy by issuing directives on medical marijuana access for veterans. Recognizing the therapeutic potential of cannabis for veterans living with chronic pain and PTSD, the Senate has set out to provide access to this treatment option. It is a step towards much needed change that veterans have long called for.
Under Senate directions, the Department of Veterans Affairs will be launching a five-year research program to evaluate the use of cannabis for veterans. The program’s goals include:
- Documenting the ways in which cannabis can provide relief for service-related conditions such as chronic pain and PTSD.
- Start phased-in cannabis treatments for veterans with insurance coverage.
- Approve the use of cannabis when other treatments fail.
These initiatives will go a long way towards improving veterans’ access to therapeutic cannabis, and ultimately improve the quality of life of veterans with service-related injuries. This is a long-awaited breakthrough that many in the veteran community have been hoping for.
The end of the decades-long federal prohibition of medical marijuana and hemp genetics is in sight, as the Senate Committee has taken a monumental step towards unlocking access and research for veterans. Whether these directives set the framework for the future of plant-based medicine remains to be seen. Ultimately, it’s a step forward in recognizing the promising potential of medical marijuana, psychedelics, and hemp genetics innovation in improving the health and wellness of veterans and others across the country.