University of Miami Studies Cannabis and COVID-19

The University of Miami is leading a study that is looking at the impact of COVID-19 and cannabis patients. The study will be utilizing epidemiology expertise and looking at data collected on the patterns and trends of medical cannabis patients during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Since the outbreak, cannabis patients have been acting kind of funny. During the beginning of the pandemic, many patients feared their dispensaries would close, so they stocked up. Turns out cannabis dispensaries in many states were deemed essential. The current situation cannabis patients face is a delay. Meaning many patients used to be able to just show up at their dispensary and make a purchase. Many dispensaries have changed their supply chain due to the coronavirus moving to systems that rely on pickup and delivery. 

Cannabis During a Pandemic

The study will utilize an anonymous survey asking patients about their mental health and physical health. The study also considers changes in patient’s frequency of use, dosage, and route of administration based on COVID-19.

Denise C Vidot, PhD, who is an epidemiologist and assistant professor at the School of Nursing and Health Studies, will be leading the preliminary study.

“The global qualifying conditions for medical cannabis, though not uniform, all include individuals with compromised immune systems and other chronic health conditions. Therefore, this is a population that we cannot forget about in our joint effort to ‘flatten the curve’. If COVID-19 has taught us anything, it is that population-based data is vital to make informed decisions. My team and I understand that the plural of anecdote is not data. So, we are combining our skills to do our part to provide that data. Our goal is to have cannabis users from every country complete this survey, so the data is more generalizable.”, said Vidot about the study.

Another topic the study will consider is how sharing cannabis, by passing around a joint for instance, can contribute to the spread of COVID-19.

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