Medical marijuana, the new cash-only fad

The new financial boon for frustrated primary care doctors?

I recently visited Lake Tahoe. Medical marijuana clinics there charge cash for brief visits. This means no insurance forms.

Headaches and high heel pain qualify for a prescription. I foresee the end of primary care medicine. Why practice medicine when you can get easy cash for medical marijuana?

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  • Anonymous

    Six hundred bucks ($600) in my area.

    I know that because a patient came in with something similar to what you described, not the plantar fasciitis or the headache (hangover or withdrawal?) but something similar and benign.

    As I was preparing consultation and studies for the benign condition (heaven forbid I actually CURE the marijuana-qualifying condition), the person asked me to sign the recertification papers for the “medical” marijuana.

    See, if I do it, it’s “free” in that I’m taking the patient’s insurance. If the person goes to the marijuana mill….with some sort of name like “compassionate care clinic”……it’s $600 cash.

    And people are lined up to pay that six hundred bucks.

    I declined to certify the marijuana. The patient bad-mouthed me all over town. Offended, quit the clinic.

    But still paid the mill another $600 to recertify.

  • ERP

    Honestly marijuana should be legalised period. No “medical” bull. Just legalise it and move on and spend more money on alcoholism research and other more important things!

  • Anonymous

    “I declined to certify the marijuana. The patient bad-mouthed me all over town. Offended, quit the clinic.”

    Good move from a liability prevention perspective. Being an enabler of some addict high on booze and pot could produce serious legal and liability problems beyond your worst nightmare.

    Car accidents, slip and fall on their own vomit, violent or out of control dangerous behavior, etc: you are the deep pocket. “That terrible doctor said here in writing I had to be taking marijuana and he signed it!”

  • Anonymous

    “Why practice medicine when you can get easy cash for . . . (insert whatever here)”

    Indeed it is a fair question and for those who went into medicine soley for money are motivated soley by money, then there is no answer to the question.

    There is, and always has been, more profit in feeding people’s addiction than in providing useful and needed services that serve to raise rather than lower the soul of our fellow men. There is plenty of opportunity to make a good living doing the former, but for the greedy and the materialistic, the latter will always call.

    Why be a honest policeman when you can do better taking bribes from dealers? Why be a minister who tells people the truth when you can build a megachurch feeding people’s narcissism? Why should a CEO do his best for the shareholders when he can loot the company and get rich?

    These are all moral questions that everyone must ask themselves at some point. If one is old enough to be practicing medicine and finds himself asking it often, without readily comming up with the answer, then I suggest a career change is order, as one’s moral qualifications for the medical profession are in doubt.

    Perhaps we should define a new “profession” for all those with medical training who wish to do something that requires, in substance or law, medical training but is outside the moral construct of the medical profession as traditionally conceived in the Hippocratic tradition.

    There the abortionists and drug peddlers can work without sullying the respect that real physicians have earned and without deceiving the public as to their motives and nature.

  • rawr

    I don’t get most of the people here…

    Cannabis is NOT a physically addicting substance, and can only be *VERY* Minorly emotionally addicting to 10% of American’s. In short, caffein is more addicting.

    Marijuana can NOT kill you as a result of an overdose.

    Marijuana does NOT cause cancer in any fashion, and has been proven, even in government studies, to even possibly HELP against certain cancers such as gliomas.

    Alcohol is WAY more harmful to the body and person than marijuana, and you do not simply *slip and fall* when a person is on marijuana.

    There are *Hundreds* of practical medical marijuana applications, starting with cancer patients. It is a much safer drug than most medicines, including Tylenol and Advil.

    Also, please name one person that can be proven to be violent as a result of Marijuana? If you believe Cannabis makes you violent, then you do not deserve to be a doctor.

    Hell, Cannabis has even been shown in studies to not kill brain cells, let alone cause long-period brain damage.

    It is useful to Cancer Patients, Insomniacs, Glaucoma Patients, and many many more types of illnesses.

    If you want to debate the topic further, or want sources to prove what I’m saying, email me at

  • tahoejimbo420

    I have lived in South Lake Tahoe for 10 years and can assure you there are very few Doctors that want to write for Cannabis, after 10 years we finally have one that is local, otherwise it is a 90 minute drive to the other end of El Dorado county in Cameron Park. And still no dispensary, it is grow yourself, have a caregiver, or pay street prices $300+ an ounce. Cannabis patients should not be harrased if it works for them (and the fact it has been legal in California since 1995.

  • matt mernagh

    think this is a pretty sour way to look at medical marijuana. the decision to use any medication should be between a doctor and a patient. if the doctor isn’t the right fit for the patient then they’re happy to find a new doctor. after all the doctor is just providing a service, like your mechanic or maid.

  • Anonymous

    It’s amazing you complain about medical marijuana doctors, yet most in the profession are handing out vicodin, oxycontin, and highly addictive opiates like candy. To each his own I guess.

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