A cannabis nurse is a nurse that has extensive knowledge in the endocannabinoid system. A nurse that specializes in this field will have knowledge of the legal complexities of the herb, the herb’s benefits, how the herb should be administered and more. Cannabis nurses will help patients in identifying any potential drug interactions, minimizing any unwanted side effects, testing strains, learning about strain differences, and patient education. It is important that cannabis nurses understand how cannabis treatment works for their patients. If a person decides to go into cannabis nursing, they will need to realize that a lot of work will go into this process. They need to be willing to learn everything about cannabis and patient treatment. A nurse in this field will be subject to questioning by the patient as well as the patient’s family members due to the stigma that surrounds the use of marijuana.
Who is Eligible to Become a Cannabis Nurse?
A person who wishes to become a cannabis nurse must first be a registered or licensed nurse. They must hold current licensure and credentials to become a cannabis nurse.
Course to Become a Cannabis Nurse
The ACNA has come out with three separate courses that will provide all the information that a nurse will need to know about cannabis. The courses are offered in an eight-hour seminar. This seminar will give the nurse six continuing education units. When the nurse has completed and passed the class as well as the exam, they will receive the Certificate of Competency from the ACNA. If a nurse wants to further their education in cannabis, they can take the Advance Curriculum which will go over cannabis benefits and will give the student 4 continuing education units upon completion. There is an online option that has been created with the Medical Cannabis Institute. This Medical Cannabis Curriculum for Nurses can be accessed online and will give nurses eight continuing education units upon completion.
Where Are Classes Taken?
To find out where these classes are offered, a potential cannabis nurse should visit the events section of the CNA website. There they will find course information as well as online course information.
Will A Nurse Be Certified After Testing?
As of right now, there is no certification for cannabis nursing. Once the class is completed, the nurse will be competent in cannabis nursing. For a nurse to become certified in a specialty like cannabis they will have to take more clinical hours, renew credentials, and put forth more educational hours. There is no such process for cannabis nursing as of right now. However, the ACNA is working hard to lay out the framework to ensure that cannabis nurses can go through the process and get recognized by the ANCC.
When Will Certification Be Ready?
According to the ACNA, while they are working hard to get certification by the ANCC recognized, it is going to be several years in the future before this happens. In order for this to happen, the framework has to be laid out to track hours, exams, additional education, and renewing credentials. This is a time-consuming process that will take time. Another factor that may delay the certification process is the fact that many states still have not legalized marijuana and it is still illegal on a federal level. As more states start to allow the use of cannabis, this may change and allow for the certification of cannabis nursing to happen quicker.