Survey reveals uneven training in cannabis therapy among cannabis dispensary staff – Mirage News

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

BOSTON – With research suggesting that many patients with cancer are using cannabis for medical purposes – and oncology teams tending to offer little guidance about its use – patients are often turning for advice to staff at cannabis dispensaries. A new study by researchers at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute suggests that despite a commitment by many dispensary workers to educate themselves about medical cannabis, dispensaries often prioritize sales skills over cannabis knowledge, and the level of on-the-job training at dispensaries is notably uneven.

The study, published online today by the journal JCO Oncology Practice, is based on in-depth interviews with 26 workers at cannabis dispensaries in 13 states. If the results are confirmed by a larger, quantitative study, they obligate the medical community to ensure patients have reliable sources of guidance about medical cannabis, study authors say.

“Our study opens the door to discussing that we as clinicians may not be able to completely defer responsibility for advising patients to the dispensaries,” says the study’s first author, Ilana Braun, MD, of Dana-Farber and Brigham and Women’s Hospital. “We need to figure out ways to address this issue.”

In a previous study by Braun and her colleagues, 80% of oncologists surveyed said

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