Washington State Approves Medical Marijuana As Treatment For PTSD

Photo courtesy of Torben Hansen, via Flickr Creative Commons

Starting July 24, Washington state’s medical-marijuana system will add post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury to the conditions a medical provider — outside of the Department of Veterans Affairs — can cite to authorize the drug. With this, Washington will be the 11th state to include post-traumatic stress as a qualifying condition, reports the News Tribune.

“We served this country proudly,” said Army veteran Dante Cammarata, “and we don’t want to be seen as criminals for trying to help ourselves.”

Washington state law now allows any adult over the age of 21 to buy marijuana in licensed stores, and though the dispensaries that sell medical marijuana are not tightly regulated, they will be due to the legal changes taking effect Friday. For veterans like Cammarata, marijuana is a medicine, and this new change means that the drug, and those who use it, can stop feeling vilified.

“Cannabis by itself can be abused, just like anything,” he said. “It needs to be recognized as the medicine it is.”

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Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Lisa Ferdinando

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