Should Cannabis Be Part Of Hospice Care?

By Terry Hacienda, The Fresh Toast on

Published in Cannabis Daily

A life-threatening illness is one of the most frightening experiences anyone can go through. No one wants to be diagnosed with a terminal illness, and no one wants someone they love diagnosed with the same thing.  For almost 2 million people each year, they enter hospice for the last part of their life.  It is hard on the patient and the loved ones.  Should cannabis be part of hospice care? In some legal states, hospice staff are allowing marijuana to ease suffering, especially for cancer.

As Americans continue to age, the risks of terminal illnesses increase with more people getting admitted to hospitals and hospices. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) announced that there are an estimated 1.7+ million people in hospices receiving care from varying life-threatening illnesses. This number is a tremendous increase from what was obtainable in the last 20 years. In those hospices, the patients receive a special kind of care that slows the painful process.

The care given to patients is provided by compassionate individuals who are 100% available to make the last life phases very comfortable. While these hospices are doing their best, there are still instances where some patients don’t get better with the care they receive.

Of course, this is a problematic situation, and it has made medical experts seek solutions for hospices, and marijuana is one of the most viable ideas they explore.

Despite the good intentions, the legal status of marijuana affects its use and effectiveness in hospices. For example, although some states have legalized marijuana, it is still not legally accepted at the federal level. The federal level’s lack of support makes it difficult for some healthcare providers to prescribe cannabis for their patients in hospices.

Marijuana in hospices 


Marijuana is utilized in hospice care to ease patients suffering as it plays a significant therapeutic role for patients dealing with the emotional despair that comes with a terminal illness.

Hospices are turning to marijuana as a way of reinventing their approach to Medicare for patients. These hospices want a more patient-centric care experience that eradicates the idea that they are cold, ineffective, and unwelcome.

Therefore, hospices in America need to incorporate more effective treatment and care options that help them feel like they are making daily progress. In addition to marijuana, the hospices also integrate additional treatment options such as music, thoughtful quality care, and family moments to make the treatment options relatable.

But medical marijuana has become a new focus for these hospices. As Americans’ attitudes towards marijuana change (from suspicion to acceptance), more hospices are encouraged to consider it as a treatment option.


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