MediCann Gives away One Million Dollars Annually to those Less Fortunate
By Dr. Jean Talleyrand
MediCann has always taken a deep interest not only in our patients but also in the community outside of our practice, especially those less fortunate. Many people, and certain members of the media believe that medical cannabis physicians are in this branch of medicine merely because its profitable, and that this sentiment overshadows the real deal: which is to heal. If more people knew the reasons why I started this collective of compassionate care clinics, they might take a different view.
I’m a third generation physician and my family comes from Haiti – the first country in the western hemisphere in which African slaves gained independence and self-sovereignty. Haiti is also the poorest country in the western hemisphere, yet we are a group of people that have been to the mountaintops and suffered in the deserts. In fact, there’s an old saying describing Haiti’s hilly countryside: Beyond mountains, there are mountains again. Which is both a comment on the topography and a lovely metaphor to describe life’s journey. Our journey as medical cannabis doctors is a difficult climb, but reaching the top is as rewarding in equal measure. One thing is for sure: there is always another mountain to climb.
The mountain I climb today is the medical establishment. I’ve been involved in an industry that chooses the financial bottom line over the health and well being of a person most of the time. The best example of this is the relationship between physicians and the pharmaceutical industry (interestingly, my mother was a pharmacist!). Pharmaceutical companies have strong-armed physicians into relying on their industrially produced drugs as treatment. They make it streamlined and profitable for doctors to over prescribe medicines that keep a person sick longer (because it’s more profitable for a person to be sick longer, isn’t it?). Ideally, a medicine should be prescribed with the intention of limiting or stopping its use, and should mean that you’ve gotten better. How many older people are on a list of medications to be used forever? The result is that more people die in United States hospitals from prescription medicine than from illegal drug use.
Cannabis is a plant. It comes directly from nature with minimal intervention by pharmaceutical industries. And perversely enough, the pharmaceutical industry knows how powerful and beneficial cannabis is, to the extent that they are endeavoring to create synthetic cannabinoids to cash in on one of mankind’s oldest pain relievers! The use of medical cannabis has been documented throughout history since 6000 BC. It’s only in the last 70 years that cannabis has lost its popularity as medicine, the reasoning more political than medical. Cannabis has analgesic properties that eases pain, it shrinks tumors, and for the terminally ill, makes their last time on earth more conscious and far less traumatic than opiates, allowing them to spend quality time with their loved ones. Cannabis is safe, natural, medicine.
So why am I telling you about my background, climbing mountains, and the plight of natural vs. pharmaceutical medicine? Because it’s important that you know why we do what we do. At MediCann, we seek to right the wrongs of a medical industry gone awry and it truly is an uphill climb. MediCann physicians seek to teach people how to use medicines that complement treatment or provide alternative treatments that get you well enough to render medications obsolete. In the end, the only treatments a healthy person should be using are food, exercise and companionship.
So where does that leave us as medical cannabis physicians with too many pharmaceutical options, and the media storm that’s ever pointed in our direction?
We turn the other cheek, we lead by example, and we show compassion toward those less fortunate who seek safe, natural medicine but can’t justify or afford the expense (medical cannabis is not covered by traditional healthcare programs).
In 2011, MediCann has given over one million dollars towards those in need through our Compassion Program.
Here are a few of the people we help with our Compassion Program:
These patients will always be seen for free.
• The Terminally Ill – Those with a six months to live diagnosis.
Patients who already receive discounts:
• War Veterans – receive automatic discount
• Low income - receive an automatic discount, and are usually on MediCal or MediCare.
Compassion Has Perks!
Renewal patients receive a compassionate (free) visit if they bring in 2 New Patients.
This program seeks to level the playing field in health care. I don’t think you’ll see too many physicians at Kaiser involved in this level of patient care. But then again, if you were truly in it for profit over patients, why would you set up a Compassion Program? My team and myself really care about our community and believe that cannabis is a wonder drug that improves lives.
I’ve shared a lot of personal information with you about myself and what I do. But equally important is why I do it: why I started this organization, and what drives me to offer alternative medicine as a legitimate health care choice, and then decide to give it away in the toughest economic environment I’ve seen in my adult life. It’s expensive to give, but it’s more expensive not to give if you see people in pain that you could have helped.
Yours in health,