A Canadian student from the University of Waterloo, Jonathan Zaid, has been suffering from persistent and daily headaches that stem from a rare neurological condition. Not only does he suffer from headaches but he also suffers from concentration problems and has difficulty sleeping. The condition slowly eroded his quality of life and prompted him to even drop out of school. It wasn’t until he felt as if he had no options left that he made the choice to turn to cannabis.
For all of the prescription medications that he was taking and therapies that he experimented with, he says that they were covered by his insurance and now he wants them to cover his cannabis as well. “The costs were starting to add up significantly and I didn’t understand why it shouldn’t be covered like every other drug. It was turning around my life. It was affording me the ability to go back to school to work, to do all of these great things,” says Zaid.
When the insurance company first turned him down, Zaid then went to the student union and battled for eight months in order to get the cannabis approved. Zaid says that if doctors have weighed the risks for the patient and they choose to prescribe it to them then those patients should be allowed to have their cannabis covered as any other medication would be.
His quality of life has greatly improved as a result of his cannabis use Zaid alleges. “An exciting activity before was going outside to a grocery store, that’s the most I could do in any day. And now I can go to school and do all kinds of stuff,” says Zaid. He continues to work at spreading cannabis awareness with his group Canadians for Fair Access to Medical Marijuana. Their group is dedicated to protecting the rights of medical cannabis patients and they want to improve those rights as well.