Montel Williams: A window into the patient experience for Providers.
Since his diagnosis with multiple sclerosis in 1999, Montel Williams has become one of the most high profile advocates for medical cannabis reform in the country. Williams’ advocacy is born of his experience as a patient. In the early years after his diagnosis, Williams was prescribed a formidable course of opiate pain medication to treat unbearable neuropathic pain. The side effects from those medications were devastating. Williams knew he faced a choice – become effectively an opioid addict with no real quality of life or explore other options. In exploring his options with his various doctors, Williams decided to try medicinal cannabis to help mitigate his neuropathic pain, spasticity and various other symptoms from his MS. As it turns out, over the course of the last 17 years, science, mainly conducted in Israel and Europe has validated medicinal cannabis as safe and effective for these symptoms.
Williams will address the stigma that those who choose to use medical cannabis still face, both from some providers and from society at large and provide a window for providers into the challenges that patients still face every day.