By Vanessa Orr
Every day, people are going into their doctors’ offices and asking about medical cannabis and CBD. Finding answers, however, isn’t so easy.
“Medical cannabis is a growing, $5 billion industry, and nationally, CBD is already a $2 billion industry, yet there are no CBD-focused medical societies that can help clinicians learn about it,” said Jordan Desnick, founder of the American College of CBD & Cannabis (ACCC). “Physicians don’t learn about CBD or cannabis in medical school, or during their internships or residencies, but patients are asking about it on a daily basis, and the lack of knowledge puts both physicians and patients at risk.”
The American College of CBD & Cannabis (ACCC) serves as an educational platform for physicians and allied healthcare professionals to discuss and learn about the medical benefits of cannabidiol (CBD) and medicinal cannabis. The ACCC supports clinicians in their practices and helps them optimize the medical benefits of CBD and medicinal cannabis for their patients.
“The potential opportunities for physicians in the CBD realm are enormous,” added Desnick. “If they can recommend over-the-counter products for anxiety, sleep disorders, spasticity, drug addiction and the like, instead of ordering strong prescription medicines for the same symptoms, that’s a significant health benefit for their patients.”
“Twenty years ago, Viagra came out, and was a blockbuster drug for Pfizer,” added ACCC Medical Consultant Jim Desnick, M.D. “Now it’s a billion-and-a-half-dollar drug. CBD already exceeds $1.5 billion in sales and is projected in the next five years to become a $22-25 billion industry. The need for physicians to be educated about CBD is extremely important.”
According to Jim Desnick, physicians are showing an increased interest in recommending CBD products to their patients.
“In Florida, there are approximately 2,500 physicians licensed to prescribe marijuana, but less than a couple hundred are doing it. Many of them are not ready to go the medical cannabis route, but are dipping their toes into the CBD arena,” he explained.
“Think of the tens of thousands of primary care physicians who are being asked about CBD by their patients, but have no science-based knowledge,” added Jordan Desnick. “Establishing the ACCC was necessary to fill this void and to create a professional medical society to not only provide CBD education, but credential physicians to show their knowledge and legitimacy in this space.”
On Saturday and Sunday, March 14-15, 2020, the ACCC is hosting the first annual American College of CBD & Cannabis Spring Congress for primary care physicians and allied health professionals. Keynote speakers will include Eugene Scharf, M.D., a neurologist at the Mayo Clinic Rochester and assistant professor of neurology, and Peter Grinspoon, M.D., an internist at Mass General Hospital and instructor at Harvard Medical School, who also authored the book, Free Refills: A Doctor Confronts His Addiction.
“Each day, there will be seven or eight sessions presented by leading physicians and educators in the CBD/cannabis world,” said Jordan Desnick. “Topics will range from the biology of the endocannabinoid system, to medical indications for CBD, to proper dosing and CBD’s interaction with other commonly prescribed medications like blood thinners.”
“We will also have presentations by top attorneys who will talk about CBD and medical cannabis from a legal perspective,” added Jim Desnick. “While the legalities of medical cannabis are fairly black and white, CBD is still a gray area. Physicians want to know if they can recommend it, or if they can dispense it from their offices. There is also the state vs. federal aspect of the regulatory landscape, which complicates matters even more.”
The event, which will be held at the Rosen Shingle Creek Resort in Orlando, FL, will also feature a number of vetted exhibitors, showcasing third-party, lab-tested products. Tickets to the event are available at www.ACCBD.com and participants can earn up to 14 CME credits by attending. Group hotel rates and early-bird discounts are available.