Canada’s Minister of Veterans Affairs has announced a generous medical cannabis expense reimbursement policy for the nations’ ex-military personnel.
The new policy will reimburse a rate of up to CAD $8.50 per gram for up to three grams per day of cannabis, or the equivalent in cannabis oil, for medical purposes sold by licensed producers. Under exceptional circumstances, some veterans will be reimbursed for more than 3 grams a day.
“This policy has the health and well-being of Veterans and their families at its heart,” said the Minister, the Honourable Kent Hehr.
“Veterans Affairs will continue to monitor developments in the field of marijuana for medical purposes and as new information becomes available we will be flexible, adapt and adjust as required.”
Also on the cards is a partnership between Veteran Affairs and the Canadian Armed Forces to develop a research plan and carry out a study with the aim of strengthening evidence on the effects of marijuana on the health of Veterans.
The Canadian National Medical Marijuana Association (CNMMA) has applauded the new policy, which it says is balanced.
“Our members and industry say thank you to Minister Hehr and his Government for this new policy that will benefit veterans across Canada,” reads part of a CNMMA statement.
The condition cannabis medicines are most widely used to treat in Canadian veterans is Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). While much of the evidence as to its efficacy in treating PTSD is anecdotal at this stage, a University Of Calgary research project will seek to determine if there is any scientific basis to support claims.
Over the border in the USA, a non-profit research group was awarded a USD $2.156 million grant earlier this year to carry out the first clinical trial of whole plant marijuana for PTSD treatment.
Canada has been one of the most progressive nations on the issue of medical cannabis and the sector is booming; thanks to its patient and doctor friendly policies. In Canada, medicinal marijuana can be prescribed for any condition a doctor and patient jointly agree on where there is possibility of benefit.