420: What it means for the patients in Illinois

For the recreational user, 420 is a celebration of the right to use and enjoy marijuana.  For the mmj patient it is much much more! 420 2016 marks another milestone in the longstanding battle to normalize access to the world’s oldest medicine.  Railroaded by politics far too long, marijuana is slowly finding its rightful place in a free society where people with illnesses who fail “traditional” therapies are able to make choices for themselves.   In Illinois, only 5600 patients will wake up today and have that freedom to choose while tens of thousands of patients continue to suffer.  Where we stand today is a quantum leap from where we were even one year ago, but we have a long way to go.

I received a call last week from a stage 3 cancer patient being treated at Swedish American Hospital in Rockford, Illinois.  She asked her Physician to certify her for the program.  She was told that while he agreed that she may benefit from the use of medical cannabis to manage her nausea, vomiting and fatigue, the hospital administration has forbidden him from certifying his patients. She was then given the applications needed to become a registered medical cannabis patient in Illinois and told she would have to find another doctor to sign the Physician Certification Form.  Pitiful!  Hopefully, 420 2017 will find fewer medical decisions being made in an administrators office and more being made in the doctors office.

While we acknowledge the difficulties to this point and accept there is more work to be done, today we celebrate. We celebrate choice and we celebrate those patients who have come out of the shadows and are feeling better. Those patients empowered with the legal ability to make decisions on how best to manage the symptoms associated with their illnesses.

Tomorrow….it’s back to work.

We have listed all our 420 specials on Facebook as well as Leafly.

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