Replace and Reduce Opioid Use with Medical Cannabis

Replacing opioids with medical cannabis is at the forefront of modern day medicine and saving lives (JAMA Intern Med. 2014) .Not only can medical cannabis help your actual physical pain, it supports the psychological components of well-being that contribute to long-term opioid reduction and/or abstinence.  At Seven Point, we help to translate and integrate scientific research, medical cannabis knowledge, and psychosocial community support into a technically sound cannabis treatment plan.

To begin the process of replacing or reducing opioids with medical cannabis, Dr. Sulak from Healer.com offers guidance about what forms of cannabis to use and when. He recommends that alongside every dose of opioids taken throughout the day to include a dose of medical cannabis in a tincture or oil form. The synergy of both cannabis and the opioid can increase pain relief while increasing or widening the safety threshold of the opioid ( 2017 Aug). For cravings and breakthrough symptoms, Dr. Sulak recommends vaporizing or smoking cannabis flower, in place of using a vape pen or dabbing a concentrate, as cannabis flower provides a full range of compounds that may produce a more robust medical effect.

Let us know if you would like more information on this topic. We will guide you to the various types of products that adhere to Dr. Sulak’s ‘How to Use Cannabis to Reduce and Replace Opioid Medications’ guidelines and provide you with written material including resources for your own self-study. Seven Point Lunch & Learns emphasis a positive, interactive, and supportive community-network where our clients and those of you waiting for your cards are always welcome to attend and connect with others who have similar medical cannabis interests and goals.  Come and learn more about medical cannabis dosing, strains, ratios, formulations, and delivery methods while forming positive social connections with others. We are all about creating a supportive community of healing and wellness.

Not yet registered? Visit our Sign Up and Feel Better blog  to get started!

Waiting for your card? No need to wait to join our community!

http://sevenpoint.org/self-educate.html.

Questions? Please contact us at 708-665-3143 or dispensary@sevenpoint.org.

Come and visit us today at 1132 Lake Street, Oak Park, IL 60301

Written by Amy Lee, LCSW

 

 

 

Sign up and Feel Better!

We will kick off our Seven Point blog by sharing with you everything you need to know to get registered quickly and efficiently! We have always, since the inception of the Medical Cannabis Pilot Program, been committed to raising awareness about this program and increasing the number of patients that have access. We see over 300 patients each week at Seven Point and witness first-hand the clear benefits of medical cannabis that lead to an increase in quality of life. We also know that there are many obstacles and barriers to gaining access to medical cannabis and that there is an extremely large number of patients who could tremendously benefit from this natural medicine, but who are not aware of the program or may feel overwhelmed by the rigid, multi-step application process.

To make this application process as smooth and efficient as possible, we regularly hold education & registration workshops here at Seven Point as well as at two nearby libraries, offering both daytime and evening options. Every Thursday afternoon we host these workshops in our Seven Point community room, at 1pm (please arrive promptly!), immediately next door to our dispensary. In addition to our regular Thursday workshops at Seven Point, we alternate between the Berwyn and Westchester Public Libraries, offering a workshop each week in the evening from 6:30-8pm. Check out our workshop schedule . 

At these workshops, we always have fingerprinting/background check, passport photo, and application completion services available.  We waive the fingerprinting fee for those living in Oak Park, as a community service (only at our workshops at Seven Point), and compensate those who live outside of Oak Park by providing $60 worth of coins that can be redeemed at Seven Point, once you receive your card, that equal the cost of the fingerprinting and passport photo services. Our outreach team provides support throughout this process, helping you to get registered quickly and efficiently. We do not charge any additional fees for facilitating this process as this support is a free service that we are proud to offer.

Please keep in mind that there are two separate parts to this application process:

1) Physician Certification Form (this is the first step ). The Physician Certification Form is valid for 90 days from the date of the in-person medical examination. The completed Physician Certification Form will be returned to you once it is completed by your physician. Once you have completed this step,  it is then time to begin your part of the application process. Please attend one of our workshops to complete your additional application requirements.

Do you need to find a doctor? www.ilcannabismd.com will certainly help!. Simply type in your zip code and you will find doctors in your area who are familiar with the multiple benefits of medical cannabis. Feel free to contact doctors from this list and inquire about their procedures in order to be certified with a qualifying condition.

2) Qualifying Patient application, fingerprinting, and passport photo. Please attend one of our workshops to complete you application.

Please bring the following to a Seven Point Workshop:

Qualifying Patients and Caregivers:

  • Note: This process may require follow-up in order to complete your application(s) including all required documentation. To be prepared for this process, please bring the required proofs of residency stated below and accepted form of payments with you to the workshop.
  • Your Driver’s License or State ID (it’s ok if your ID is from another state or does not have your current address).
  • Two current proofs of residency as stated on page 4 of the Qualifying Patient Application required documents and Designated  Caregiver Application required documents  such as a utility, water, cable, electric, gas, cell phone, bank statement.

Payment for fingerprinting/background check and passport photo services:

Note: Fingerprints are valid for 30 days only.   Fingerprinting fee payment options: Cash or Check payable to Seven Point.

  • At our Seven Point workshop location, we accept cash or check for the $60 fee for fingerprinting/background check and passport photo services. We waive these fees for those living in Oak Park (only at our workshops at Seven Point). If you live outside of Oak Park, you will be given $60 worth of coins to be redeemed at Seven Point.
  • At our library locations we have contracted with a licensed live scan fingerprinting service who accepts cash or credit card (no checks please) for the $62 fee for fingerprinting, background check, and passport photo. You will be given $60 worth of coins to be redeemed at Seven Point.

Payment for the state application:

Note: Application fees are mailed with applications to the state. Payment options include:  check, money order or cashiers check made payable to IDPH.

  • Patients: The state application fee must be paid with a check or money order and made payable to IDPH. Fees- $100 for 1 year, $200 for 2 years, and $250 for 3 years. Veterans and those enrolled in SSDI or SSI get a 50% discount with the required documentation.
  • Caregivers: The state application fee must be paid with a check or money order and made payable to IDPH. Fees- $25 for 1 year, $50 for 2 years, $75 for 3 years, and $75 for a Caregiver applying separately for a patient who has already been registered (the expiration date for the caregiver and the patient card will be the same).

Patients:

  • If enrolled in SSDI or SSI, bring your current Benefit Verification letter stating the type of benefits you are receiving. ( Qualifying Patient Application form) see bottom page 2.
  • If you are a Veteran and receiving care through the VA, bring your medical records from the VA from the last 15 months (on a CD only) stating your Qualifying Condition. Additionally, bring your DD214
  • (http://sevenpoint.org/forms-veterans.html).
  • If you are a veteran not currently receiving care through the VA, you will still receive the discounted application rate by providing your DD214.

You will be informed by IDPH that you have been approved and your card will be mailed directly to you. Join one of our Lunch & Learns while you wait for your card!

We are here to support you through this entire process! What questions do you have for us? Where are you in this process? Are there any tips you would like to share regarding the registration process?