The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is making clear it won’t provide support for treatment involving marijuana as part of a new grants program aimed at preventing veteran suicide
In a notice on a proposed interim final rule for the new Staff Sergeant Parker Gordon Fox Suicide Prevention Grant Program published in the Federal Register on Thursday, VA said the three-year, community-based effort will “provide or coordinate the provision of suicide prevention services to eligible individuals and their families for the purpose of reducing veteran suicide.”
But while many veterans and service organizations representing the community have repeatedly testified to Congress and federal agencies that cannabis represents a potential treatment option for medical conditions that commonly afflict military veterans returning from service, VA, perhaps not surprisingly, is drawing a line in the sand when it comes to supporting treatment regimens involving marijuana.
It’s “important for VA to note that any approaches and treatment practices approved will need to be consistent with applicable Federal law,” the department said in the notice. “For example, the use of grant funds to provide or coordinate the provision of marijuana to eligible individuals and their families will be prohibited, as marijuana is currently illegal under Federal law.”
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Published: March 15, 2022
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