Navigating Patients through the Maze of Information and Mis-Information about medicinal cannabis (Marijuana)

Author(s): Penny Daugherty Northside Hospital Cancer Institute, USA

Objectives: This presentation was developed in response to the many questions posed by navigator
colleagues, patients and physicians about the veracity of medicinal cannabis as an adjuvant to cancer
treatment as well as a possible cytotoxic agent. It became obvious to me that there is a crucial need for
accurate, evidence-based factual information to empower navigators to disseminate to their patients as
well as the patients being empowered with credible data, with which to base their treatment choices upon
as well as avoiding poor choices which could be detrimental to both their care and their pocketbook. All
slide content will be based upon published data that will be referenced.
Results: This presentation is structured to provide a practical, multifaceted resource, enabling the
navigator to factually answer the many questions patients and other health professionals are asking which
will empower patients to partner in their choices related to medicinal cannabis-based upon the data in all
references noted in this Abstract.
Conclusion: Navigation is a multifaceted process that includes education, emotional and psychosocial
reinforcement, all geared toward empowering patients to become partners in their care. With the
plethora of information, anecdotal references, and blatant misinformation about medicinal cannabis, this
presentation will offer navigators a valuable addition to their “tool-kit” as a part of the unique and intimate
partnership between the navigator and patient as they traverse the “cancer journey from initial diagnosis
throughout the continuum of care. The invaluable educations we provide our patients will not only assist
their decisions but can also save them from potential physical as well as financial damage.