WASHINGTON, Dec. 21, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, Warfighter Hemp proposed the VA Medicinal Hemp Research Act of 2018, to authorize the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to advance scientific and medical research into the safety and efficacy of medicinal hemp usage by veterans with diagnoses such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and chronic pain.
"We have all heard the stories of veterans who have used cannabis medicinally to cope with physical and psychological injuries sustained during their service to our country," said Steve Danyluk, founder of Warfighter Hemp. "With respect to CBD derived from industrial hemp, the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill by the 115th Congress has now made this usage federally legal regarding CBD derived from industrial hemp and Veterans no longer need to hide in the dark."
According to the American Legion, 22 percent of veterans report using cannabis as a safer and more effective alternative to opioids and drug cocktails currently prescribed by VA for medical conditions such as PTSD or chronic pain. Last year, opioid deaths surpassed 70,000 across the United States.
"While we know cannabis can have life-saving effects on veterans suffering from chronic pain or PTSD, there has been a severe lack of clinical research. Among all research institutions, none is better suited to conduct this critically important research than VA, and there will never be a better time to act," said Danyluk.
VA Medicinal Hemp Research Act
The VA Medicinal Hemp Research Act of 2019 would promote scientific and medical research into the safety and efficacy of CBD derived from industrial hemp usage on veterans diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder, chronic pain and other illnesses and injuries by (1) clarifying that research into medicinal hemp is well within the authority of VA and (2) by requiring VA to report to Congress on how it intends to exercise that authority. The VA Medicinal Hemp Research Act of 2019 is a pragmatic and bipartisan piece of legislation that would improve and in many cases save the lives of veterans across the country. Currently, the only legislation that even comes close to assisting veterans is HR5220, to be reintroduced in 2019 and focuses on medicinal cannabis, which includes marijuana.
While data is limited, the American Legion, a congressionally-chartered Veteran Service Organization, conducted a survey [legion.org] in October 2017 on a portion of its approximately 2.2 million veteran members and found that 92 percent of all respondents support medical research and 82 percent of all respondents support legalizing medicinal hemp. The survey also found that "22 percent of veterans are currently using cannabis to treat a medical condition."
As many veterans are currently using CBD derived from industrial hemp for medicinal purposes, it is important that clinicians are able to fully advise veterans on the impacts, harms, and benefits of cannabis use on veterans with various diagnoses including PTSD and chronic pain, particularly given that CBD derived from industrial hemp is federally legal if grown in accordance with the 2018 Farm Bill. Medical marijuana is not.
"It is clear that medical research into the safety and efficacy of cannabis usage for medical purposes is timely, necessary, and widely supported by the veteran community," said Danyluk.
About Warfighter Hemp
Warfighter Hemp is a Colorado-based manufacturer of CBD derived from industrial hemp. We are comprised of veterans and non-veterans who believe in providing an alternative to the prescription painkillers that many veterans are taking and which prevents them from living their best lives. Our mission is to provide veterans and non-veterans with a holistic and natural alternative.
We are a worldwide organization with representatives and ambassadors around the globe. We give 50 percent of our profits back to other charities that support veteran's independence. These organizations include Semper K9, Independence Corps, Spartan Alliance, Villagers for Veterans and Aleethia Foundation.
SOURCE Warfighter Hemp