"The Ethics of Medical Marijuana"

Risk & Insurance

Headshot of Joanna HairIn an article published in the August 2020 issue of Risk & Insurance, Richard Phillips and Joanna Hair provide insight on the ethics of medical marijuana as more and more insurance companies consider whether  to cover the costs of marijuana treatments. Phillips and Hair explain the ethical question inherent in the medical marijuana debate is a financial one.

"The purpose of the workers’ compensation act is to restore an employee to suitable employment," explained Phillips. "We have an ethical obligation to do whatever we can to return that person to work, and ethically we’re all bound by that goal."

Hair echoed, "We owe a fiduciary duty to our clients to make sure we’re being good stewards of their assets. If we can return a claimant to work for cheaper using medical marijuana, then we should consider it.”

As the workers’ comp industry continues to review the available research and develop a plan to address the potential reclassification of medical marijuana, the ethical debate will continue to evolve. For employers, the need to remain part of the legislative process will be vital.

"If we can get ahead of it and be proactive, then we don’t have to clean up later," said Hair.

To read the full article, please click here.

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