According to a recent survey, most older folks support medical cannabis as long as a doctor recommends it.
The survey makes the distinction that while most seniors are not prescribed medical cannabis, they are not opposed to it, either, as long as it is under a doctor’s orders. Four out of five of those between 50 and 80 claim they support medical cannabis as a prescription, and 40 percent said they support medical cannabis for any reason.
The poll, conducted by the University of Michigan Institute for Healthcare Policy and Innovation, asked 2,007 Americans of that age bracket their feelings on medical cannabis. Over two-thirds of the people that were polled said that cannabis is useful to ease pain. However, half of the people still said they believe pain medication to be more efficient than cannabis when it comes to pain management.
“While just six percent of our poll respondents said they’d used marijuana for medical purposes themselves, 18 percent said they know someone who has,” said Preeti Malani, M.D., director of the poll and a specialist in treatment of older patients. “With medical marijuana already legal in 29 states and the District of Columbia, and other states considering legalizing this use or all use, this is an issue of interest to patients, providers and policymakers alike.”
AARP even wrote an article on the study, a sure sign that cannabis is a valid topic for seniors and their health. “We don’t know for sure if marijuana is less addictive or more effective than prescription drugs,” Malani told AARP regarding the logistics behind the study. “There are no standardized doses for medical marijuana. A doctor may give you permission for it, but the person advising you in a marijuana shop may not have the training to know which kind and which dosage is best for your needs.”
Despite some of the negative attitudes regarding the subject, this represents a significant stride in senior interest in cannabis, as well as a broader trend of acceptance across the country.