More than 60 percent of American seniors want Medicare to cover medical cannabis and most respondents think it would be more effective than other treatments
the staff of the Ridgewood blog
Ridgewood NJ, MedicarePlans.com, a trusted platform for affordable health care resources for the elderly and disabled communities, has published a new survey report that provides insight into the use of medical marijuana among American seniors. The study also highlights opinions about health insurance coverage for cannabis treatments. Research experts targeted Medicare recipients and generated responses from 1,250 adults aged 65 and older.
According to the report, 1 in 5 Medicare recipients currently uses medical marijuana to treat one or more health conditions. Sixty-six percent of respondents believe that Medicare should cover cannabis products and treatments. Nearly 60 percent of seniors who support health insurance coverage for medical marijuana think it could be more effective when other treatments fail. Additional reasons why most respondents agree that Medicare should cover cannabis treatments are its non-synthetic or natural compounds, non-addictive properties, and affordability.
Survey results indicate that older adults are seeking marijuana treatment for a broad range of mental and physical conditions. Anxiety, chronic pain, and depression are the top three conditions that users try to remedy with medical marijuana. Comparatively, 32 percent of respondents use medical marijuana to treat anxiety, while 31 percent use it for chronic pain. Forty-eight percent of Medicare recipients say insurance should cover cannabis because it can treat multiple health concerns, including pain and inflammation, appetite loss, and sleep disorders or insomnia.
The study also suggests that Democrats are more likely than Republicans to seek medical treatment using marijuana. Twenty-one percent of respondents, who identify as Democrats, use medical marijuana. In contrast, only 14 percent of Republican Medicare recipients currently use cannabis remedies.
Conversely, 34 percent of seniors oppose health insurance coverage for medical marijuana. Among this group, 38 percent say they fear cannabis prices will increase if insurance and pharmaceutical companies get involved in the distribution of the products. Moreover, 31 percent of non-supporters say the long-term impacts of using medical marijuana are still unknown. Survey respondents also believe Medicare should not pay for cannabinoid medications because there is limited research into the uses and effectiveness.
MedicarePlans.org commissioned this survey to examine how seniors think about approving health insurance coverage for cannabis products and treatments. The survey was administered via Pollfish, the online survey platform, and distributed to adults ages 65 and older. To qualify for the survey, each respondent was required to have health insurance through Medicare. This survey was conducted over two days, starting on April 1 and ending on April 2, 2022. To access the complete report, please visit https://www.medicareplans.com/1-in-5-medicare-recipients-use-medical-marijuana/
MedicarePlans.com provides access to affordable health care through educational programs, interactive resources, and functional tools. The website is managed by experts and researchers who strive to support the elderly and people with disabilities through community-based education and actionable solutions for Medicare. To learn more, visit https://www.medicareplans.com/.