Right now is a fantastic time to be involved in Utah's Medical Marijuana industry. The state’s Medical Cannabis program, while still new, is growing rapidly. The ever-changing landscape of new products, delivery methods and treatment options can feel overwhelming, even for the Qualified Medical Providers (QMPs) and Pharmacy Medical Providers (PMPs) who serve Medical Cannabis patients in Utah.
If you are new to Medical Marijuana as a patient, you have a lot to learn. But guess what? So do the people reaching out to help you. Your QMPs and PMPs are learning right alongside you. So are growers and processors. Just about everyone with their hands in Medical Marijuana is learning about this fantastic plant and what it can do for people who need it.
On a recent episode of the Utah in the Weeds podcast, co-hosts Chris Holifield and Tim Pickett talked about Pickett's experience as a QMP. Pickett founded the Utah Therapeutic Health Center, which helps patients obtain their Medical Marijuana Cards and gives them advice on using cannabis as a medicine.
Pickett wasn't afraid to mention in that podcast how he was learning from patients. How cool is that? A lot of times, medical providers act as though they have nothing to learn from their patients. They have the mindset that they are the experts, so patients should just be quiet and listen. Tim Pickett doesn't work that way. His MO is to develop high-quality, mutually beneficial relationships with UTTHC’s patients.
Pickett’s interactions with patients help him better understand how different people respond to different Medical Cannabis products. He learns by asking about patient dosages, delivery methods, and frequency. He has learned about everything from layering to stacking to making edibles at home.
QMPs like Tim Pickett take every opportunity they can to learn more about Medical Marijuana. Pickett doesn't learn just from his patients; he also learns from his own research and interactions with colleagues. He told Holifield about how he interacts with PMPs to learn from them too.
Technically speaking, a PMP is one of the most qualified to discuss the finer details of how Medical Marijuana can help a particular patient. After all, that's part of a pharmacist's formal training. But there is still a lot about THC and CBD pharmacists don't understand. It’s refreshing to know that Utah’s QMPs and PMPs are teaching each other about the uses of Medical Cannabis.
Just listening to what Pickett had to say explains why Medical Marijuana is such a unique industry within the greater medical field. There aren't many other fields in which so much learning is going on. In fact, a lot of American medicine has grown stale. But in the Medical Marijuana arena, everything is new and fresh.
The most important thing is that PMPs and QMPs are not keeping what they learn to themselves. They are sharing it with patients as a means of helping them get the most from the Medical Cannabis experience. They are also sharing their knowledge with lawmakers. By teaching lawmakers what they know, they are helping to shape the future of Utah's Medical Marijuana regulations.
It is a great time to be involved in the nascent Medical Marijuana industry. Utah is one of the few states doing it right. There is a lot to learn, but every bit of acquired knowledge will only help to make Utah’s Medical Cannabis program better for patients and medical providers alike.