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Insurance companies offering coverage to marijuana smokers.
Posted: 05 April 2010 05:12 PM   [ Ignore ]
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Read more: http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2010/03/02/89643/medical-marijuana-insurance-coverage.html#ixzz0kGt50qKh

  Of all the arguments by proponents of legalized marijuana, this is probably the most convincing.
If marijuana posed a serious threat to health, insurance companies would run away from it as far as they could. The fact that they are offering coverage is proof that they do not consider marijuana a health risk. Try to get coverage if you are a tobacco smoker. It is the single greatest disqualifier for insurance coverage.
But apparently insurance industry looks forward to collecting premiums for a long time from medical Jay users, with little need for pay-outs. Marijuana is a weed and if legalized it would be as inexpensive as tea. And that translates into Profits!! This is tantamount to the insurance industry endorsing marijuana use, at least for medical purposes. Ironic.

[ Edited: 05 April 2010 05:18 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 05 April 2010 07:15 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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I think marijuana needs to be investigated for possible use as a medicine, but people who use it claim it as THE ONE TRUE CURE for everything. Just like Homeopathy, chiropractors, reiki, acupuncture, etc…... and I have never heard of anyone going to the clinics and coming our without a prescription, because it is not the appropriate treatment. Apparently, marijuana is ALWAYS the appropriate treatment for ANYTHING!

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Posted: 05 April 2010 07:20 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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asanta - 05 April 2010 07:15 PM

I think marijuana needs to be investigated for possible use as a medicine, but people who use it claim it as THE ONE TRUE CURE for everything. Just like Homeopathy, chiropractors, reiki, acupuncture, etc…... and I have never heard of anyone going to the clinics and coming our without a prescription, because it is not the appropriate treatment. Apparently, marijuana is ALWAYS the appropriate treatment for ANYTHING!

Now you guys! If there’s just one CAM you could ignore, could you please let it be this one? Please? Think of the overall societal benefits! smile

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Posted: 05 April 2010 08:00 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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asanta - 05 April 2010 07:15 PM

I think marijuana needs to be investigated for possible use as a medicine, but people who use it claim it as THE ONE TRUE CURE for everything. Just like Homeopathy, chiropractors, reiki, acupuncture, etc…... and I have never heard of anyone going to the clinics and coming our without a prescription, because it is not the appropriate treatment. Apparently, marijuana is ALWAYS the appropriate treatment for ANYTHING!

Seems to have a universal effect on the user of a feeling of well-being. Can we ignore that?

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Posted: 05 April 2010 08:14 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Write4U - 05 April 2010 08:00 PM
asanta - 05 April 2010 07:15 PM

I think marijuana needs to be investigated for possible use as a medicine, but people who use it claim it as THE ONE TRUE CURE for everything. Just like Homeopathy, chiropractors, reiki, acupuncture, etc…... and I have never heard of anyone going to the clinics and coming our without a prescription, because it is not the appropriate treatment. Apparently, marijuana is ALWAYS the appropriate treatment for ANYTHING!

Seems to have a universal effect on the user of a feeling of well-being. Can we ignore that?

If there was ever a case for creationism….. LOL Some wish to ignore it Write4U, unfortunately some of those people have been put in positions of power for along time. I think it’s that
Dunning-Kruger effect again.

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Posted: 05 April 2010 09:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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VYAZMA - 05 April 2010 07:20 PM
asanta - 05 April 2010 07:15 PM

I think marijuana needs to be investigated for possible use as a medicine, but people who use it claim it as THE ONE TRUE CURE for everything. Just like Homeopathy, chiropractors, reiki, acupuncture, etc…... and I have never heard of anyone going to the clinics and coming our without a prescription, because it is not the appropriate treatment. Apparently, marijuana is ALWAYS the appropriate treatment for ANYTHING!

Now you guys! If there’s just one CAM you could ignore, could you please let it be this one? Please? Think of the overall societal benefits! smile

It is the CAM part that bothers me. I wish they would just be honest and say that they like it because it gives them a pleasant buzz. I respect that more than ‘it cures everything’!

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Posted: 06 April 2010 02:52 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Unfortunately, the political and medical issues around marijuana get mixed up, which leads to people supporting medical use of it because they believe in legalizing the recreational use of it. These are two separate questions. As far as recreational use, I have no objections. But the evidence that it has benefit sufficient to justify using it as a medical treatment isn’t very strong. What people don’t seem to get is that smoking marijuana IS smoking. There’s no reason to think it will cause less harm than tabocco, apart from the fact that most people couldn’t manage to smoke as much of it (though I remember some guys in college who got close… grin.

Insurance companies pay for all sorts of things that don’t work or have risks becuase political and public pressure leads them to do so. Chiropractic is widely covered well beyond the limited legitimate uses for lower back pain, despite the risks of neck trauma and stroke from cervical chiropractic manipulations. So the insurance industry stand on something isn’t tantamount to a scientific justification of the process.

Apart from those who want it legalized for recreational use or on principle, medical marijuana is primarily being pushed by advocacy groups for HIV and cancer patients and people with chronic pain or immune-system disease. These are the same people to whom CAM therapies are always marketed because we either don’t have any effective scientific therapies to offer them or they are dying and it seems meanspirited to deny them any option, however unlikely to really work.

I’m with asanta. If people with these disease (or anyone else, for that matter) want to smoke pot and get high, I’ve no objections. But selling it as a medical therapy and covering it with insurance premiums other people have to pay isn’t justified by the science.

Here is some more detailed information on the scientific issues.

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Posted: 06 April 2010 03:36 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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I read the link and saw no evidence of other drugs being safer or more effective than maijuana, in the areas where marijuana is prescribed to reduce pain, nausea, insomnia, etc.
When we read the labels and potential side effects of “scientifically” manufactured drugs, it is clear that all of them are more dangerous than marijuana. With the exception of smoke inhalation, there is no evidence of any harmful side effects of marijuana, none. You cannot kill yourself with marijuana, but you can kill yourself with overdoses of all other narcotics and just about every other medicine you can think of. Aspirin can kill you, vitamins can kill you. Let us not forget the readily prescribed sleeping pills.
As to the allegation of addiction to marijuana, this addiction is not physical. There are no physical withdrawal symptoms from stopping marijuana. Nicotine, Caffeine, Sugar all exhibit both physical and psychological withdrawals but no one mentions this, except when referring to marijuana. There may well be psychological withdrawal considerations, but such a person would most likely exhibit such symptoms when denied anything that offered relief in any form. I bet one could induce a psychological reaction in some by withholding a placebo.
I dare anyone to produce a narcotic which is less addictive, while being as effective and safe as marijuana.

[ Edited: 06 April 2010 03:49 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 06 April 2010 03:48 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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Write4U - 06 April 2010 03:36 PM

I read the link and saw no evidence of other drugs being safer or more effective than maijuana, in the areas where marijuana is prescribed to reduce pain, nausea, etc.
When we read the labels and potential side effects of “scientifically” manufactured drugs, it is clear that all of them are more dangerous than marijuana. With the exception of smoke inhalation, there is no evidence of any harmful side effects of marijuana, none. You cannot kill yourself with marijuana, but you can kill yourself with overdoses of all other narcotics and just about every other medicine you can think of. Aspirin can kill you, vitamins can kill you.
As to the allegation of addiction to marijuana, this addiction is not physical. There are no physical withdrawal symptoms from stopping marijuana. Nicotine, Caffeine, Sugar all exhibit both physical and psychological withdrawals but no one mentions this, except when referring to marijuana. There may well be psychological withdrawal considerations, but such a person would most likely exhibit such symptoms when denied anything that offered relief in any form.
I dare anyone to produce a narcotic which is less addictive, while being as effective as marijuana.

Write4U, we don’t know the safety or effectiveness of marijuana. Except for a very few studies, it is illegal to study marijuana. Providers of marijuana are not required by law to list all of it’s side effects, including psychosis and paranoia in some people. Plenty is known about nicotine and caffeine withdrawal, I don’t buy into sugar withdrawal, I’d have to see the studies you are referring to. You can ‘kill yourself’ if your reactions are impaired by marijuana while operating machinery. And when it comes down to it, smoking is smoking, and I would expect to start seeing smoking related illnesses in long term heavy users in the future as the boomers age.

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Posted: 06 April 2010 04:02 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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Right, the problem is that scientifically studied medicines have generally had their dangers identified and they are listed on the drug label, so we can easily get scared of them. Drugs not adequately tested, such as smoking raw marijuana, seem safer because we rely on the availability bias to decide if they are safe or not. If you can’t think of a case in which they have done harm, you presume such cases must be nonexistent or very rare. Only systematic, large-scale research is able to identify important but not ubiquitous side-effects, but once these are identified unfortunately the drugs seem more dangerous than others we haven’t tested enough to find the dangers of.

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Posted: 06 April 2010 04:04 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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Asanta,
I agree that a comprehensive study must be made for us to know the limits of marijuana use. Hopefully this will now be done (a little late if you ask me).
As to psychosis, I have never heard of anyone lapsing into a psychotic state, unless there were other drugs combined. As to paranoia, that is true, but it is a result of the hightening of awareness (in a myopic way). Thus the fact that marijuana use is illegal and an otherwise law abiding person knows he/she is breaking the law, may tend to increase a certain anxiety of being caught. On the other hand this heightening of sensory processing, also has creative consequences.
Lastly, when we address marijuana use we always call it “drug abuse”. Why can we not stick to the term “moderate use”.

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Posted: 06 April 2010 04:08 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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Be all that as it may, I seriously doubt that inhaling any sort of smoke into the lungs over a prolonged period is going to be at all good for one’s health.  (Of course, as a palliative for terminal illness or in pill form it may be a different issue).

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Posted: 06 April 2010 04:25 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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dougsmith - 06 April 2010 04:08 PM

Be all that as it may, I seriously doubt that inhaling any sort of smoke into the lungs over a prolonged period is going to be at all good for one’s health.  (Of course, as a palliative for terminal illness or in pill form it may be a different issue).

Point well taken. In fact, inhalation of superheated smoke may also contribute to mouth and lung cancer, in addition to clogging up the lungs. But then this is why the Bong has become the delivery system of choice, because it minimizes the harmful effects of direct smoke inhalation.
But if there was only one recreational drug allowed, I would choose marijuana over all others as being the most effective, yet least harmful to the heart, liver, kidneys, or brain.

[ Edited: 06 April 2010 04:57 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 06 April 2010 04:36 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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mckenzievmd - 06 April 2010 04:02 PM

Right, the problem is that scientifically studied medicines have generally had their dangers identified and they are listed on the drug label, so we can easily get scared of them. Drugs not adequately tested, such as smoking raw marijuana, seem safer because we rely on the availability bias to decide if they are safe or not. If you can’t think of a case in which they have done harm, you presume such cases must be nonexistent or very rare. Only systematic, large-scale research is able to identify important but not ubiquitous side-effects, but once these are identified unfortunately the drugs seem more dangerous than others we haven’t tested enough to find the dangers of.

I agree, but to say there is no empirical evidence is a dodge. The use of marijuana is not by a few isolated individuals. It has been used by billions of people for thousands of years. If it were harmful in any significant way we would have heard about by now. Anecdotal evidence works both ways. If the anecdotal evidence was that marijuana is harmful (as it is with many other drugs such as meth), I am sure the medical profession would cite that as a form of proof that it is in fact harmful.

[ Edited: 06 April 2010 04:43 PM by Write4U ]
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Posted: 06 April 2010 05:53 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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asanta - 05 April 2010 09:23 PM
VYAZMA - 05 April 2010 07:20 PM
asanta - 05 April 2010 07:15 PM

I think marijuana needs to be investigated for possible use as a medicine, but people who use it claim it as THE ONE TRUE CURE for everything. Just like Homeopathy, chiropractors, reiki, acupuncture, etc…... and I have never heard of anyone going to the clinics and coming our without a prescription, because it is not the appropriate treatment. Apparently, marijuana is ALWAYS the appropriate treatment for ANYTHING!

Now you guys! If there’s just one CAM you could ignore, could you please let it be this one? Please? Think of the overall societal benefits! smile

It is the CAM part that bothers me. I wish they would just be honest and say that they like it because it gives them a pleasant buzz. I respect that more than ‘it cures everything’!

Asanta, if this substance was allowed a fair chance in its actual arena-alongside alcohol, I could agree with you. As it isn’t, not even closely, this outlet into the field of CAM, or outright medicine seems acceptable. Yes acceptable given the proven extreme high demand for a substance which is probably far-less harmful than McDonalds food, Jack Daniels, or Valium.
If only millions of people could admit to their MD’s that they are taking pain-killers or sedatives for the “buzz” then what? What would happen then? And where does that leave marijuana?

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Posted: 06 April 2010 06:43 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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Write4U - 06 April 2010 04:25 PM
dougsmith - 06 April 2010 04:08 PM

Be all that as it may, I seriously doubt that inhaling any sort of smoke into the lungs over a prolonged period is going to be at all good for one’s health.  (Of course, as a palliative for terminal illness or in pill form it may be a different issue).

Point well taken. In fact, inhalation of superheated smoke may also contribute to mouth and lung cancer, in addition to clogging up the lungs. But then this is why the Bong has become the delivery system of choice, because it minimizes the harmful effects of direct smoke inhalation.
But if there was only one recreational drug allowed, I would choose marijuana over all others as being the most effective, yet least harmful to the heart, liver, kidneys, or brain.

FWIW, I don’t think the issue has to do with the heat. It has to do with the fine particulate matter that gets lodged in the alveoli of the lungs. These cause physical damage and apparently have carcinogenic properties. (As it seems all burned matter does to some extent).

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