The Rise of Medical Marijuana: A Game-Changer in Healthcare

Medical marijuana has been shown to ease pain in some patients, control nausea and vomiting associated with cancer treatment, and lower pressure inside the eye (glaucoma). That may change as financial incentives and extra application points become available in communities experiencing economic hardship.

Medical Marijuana: A Game-Changer in Healthcare

NJ medical marijuana is now legal in 29 states and the District of Columbia. Doctors can recommend cannabis for conditions like PTSD and chronic pain, as well as to alleviate nausea and weight loss associated with cancer or HIV/AIDS. Cannabis also has the potential to treat glaucoma and help patients manage their appetites. It has been shown to reduce seizures in people with Dravet and Lennox-Gastaut syndromes, and it may be helpful for patients with other forms of epilepsy.

Patient voices have fueled the growing popularity of medical marijuana. Unlike other healthcare debates often dominated by vested interests and advocacy groups on both sides, patients have been the lone voice speaking out in near-unanimity about the efficacy of this therapy.

Many patients report that cannabis has been effective in managing their symptoms, and many doctors are open to discussing it with their patients. However, some physicians feel uncomfortable recommending it, particularly because marijuana remains a Schedule I drug under federal law.

This creates a dilemma for hospitals and other care settings that receive Medicare reimbursement or other federal grants, as they must be careful not to provide access to marijuana that could put their patients at risk of prosecution. For example, the use of marijuana by a drunk patient would likely be considered a violation of the False Claims Act.


Medical marijuana is dispensed to patients with prescriptions by doctors in several states. This is a growing industry with many potential benefits. It is available in pills, oils, sprays, and edibles. It is also being used to manage chronic pain, nausea, and PTSD. It is believed to be effective in treating a wide range of symptoms, from pain and spasticity associated with multiple sclerosis and spinal cord injury to cancer-related nausea and vomiting.

It is a highly controversial drug despite its reemerging role in the medical community. Many physicians feel uncomfortable discussing cannabis with their patients for fear of being reprimanded by medical associations and peers. The re-emergence of botanical cannabis as a medicinal plant is an important development, especially in the context of recent history. We have just lived through a century of cigarette smoking and its negative medical consequences.

Medical marijuana research is limited by the current lack of scientific data and federal restrictions on its use. Researchers hope to change this with better access to the medication. However, evaluating the efficacy of marijuana for any particular disease requires a careful review of patient-centered outcomes and safety data.

Edge Computing

The ability of medical marijuana to alleviate pain, ease nausea, and decrease anxiety and insomnia is drawing more attention in hospitals across the country. The drug has also been used to treat chronic diseases like glaucoma, AIDS and HIV, Crohn’s disease, and irritable bowel syndrome.

The pharmaceutical industry is collaborating with marijuana companies to develop cannabis-based drugs that are more effective than current therapies. However, the drug is currently not approved by the FDA to treat several conditions, including chronic pain and nausea associated with chemotherapy, PTSD, and depression.

As more and more states legalize medical marijuana, data is becoming increasingly important to understanding its potential. This shift from anecdotal evidence to big data will inform future policies and bring about a new era of consumer education on the drug.

The emergence of edge computing, which allows analytics to be performed locally rather than in the cloud, is a powerful tool for improving data privacy and security. This approach enables healthcare professionals to respond quickly to anomalies and emergencies while ensuring compliance with stringent data protection regulations, such as HIPAA in the U.S. and GDPR in Europe.

Artificial Intelligence

While marijuana is not a cure-all for all diseases, it can treat chronic pain (including back and arthritis pain), AIDS-related nausea and vomiting, and gastrointestinal issues such as Crohn’s disease and irritable bowel syndrome. It also can help ease the symptoms of glaucoma, such as vision loss. While it isn’t strong enough to relieve post-surgical or broken bone pain, it is an effective treatment for PTSD among veterans returning home from combat.

Regardless of its potential to improve patient outcomes and reduce costs, AI solutions face many challenges before reaching scale in European healthcare systems. These include establishing clinical evidence of efficacy, developing new workflows that healthcare practitioners can leverage, and identifying funding models that support their adoption.

Most of the healthcare professionals we surveyed working with AI believe that new tools should complement and augment the work of physicians rather than replace it entirely. For example, leveraging AI to free physicians from repetitive administrative tasks could allow more time for compassionate patient interactions.

Those same healthcare professionals believe that if the right data is collected, AI can help diagnose diseases more accurately and predict when a patient might need to be admitted to the hospital. However, many also see significant risks associated with using AI for diagnostics and treatment.