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Monday, December 9th 2019

Cannabis Update: What Counsellors and Therapists Need to Know Now

Michael Verbora, MD
presented by Leading Edge Seminars

YWCA Toronto – 87 Elm St, Toronto, ON M5G 0A8

What do counsellors and therapists need to know today about cannabis? Is it safe? Who benefits from its use? Young people? Highly anxious or depressed teens or adults? Those with serious mental illnesses like schizophrenia? What about habitual users versus recreational users? These are good questions for clinicians seeing clients who are experimenting with or actively using cannabis.

Cannabis has made a resurgence rather quickly as a potential leading medicine for chronic pain and mental health issues traditionally treated by prescribed medications. But “the grass is not always greener”. Despite rising rates of use of cannabis as a medicine, the evidence may still be lacking in some areas. There are now over 300,000 medical cannabis users in Canada, registered legally to access this as treatment for their needs.

Dr. Michael Verbora, a practising physician and leader in this field, will provide researched-based information and answer your questions. He will focus on the various aspects of cannabis, including the way cannabinoids interact in the human body and the changes in physical and mental health when consuming cannabinoids. He will present the evidence known to date and the emerging science behind some of the benefits of cannabis therapy. The risks and adverse events seen with cannabis will also be discussed with a focus on the effects on mental health such as depression, anxiety and substance dependence.

This workshop will provide an in-depth look at cannabis from a balanced, evidence-based perspective that takes into account its historical applications, modern day use and the various reasons for the resurgence in popularity of this therapy. Lastly, the course will walk you through some of the legal channels for access and present a global overview of the cannabis landscape.

You Will Learn:

• The scientific facts regarding the human endocannabinoid system
• The benefits and the risks of cannabinoid therapy
• The patterns of use seen in this therapy
• Methods for counselling patients regarding cannabis use
• Identifying worrisome patterns of cannabis use and applying harm reduction techniques
• The legal landscape for cannabis in Canada and globally

About the Presenter:

Michael Verbora, MD, earned an MBA and an MD before entering Family Practice residency at the University of Toronto. He has completed over 5,000 cannabinoid therapy consultations and is a global medical expert in the field of cannabinoid therapy. He has given over a hundred presentations on cannabinoid therapy, including internationally to government, parliament and regulators. He is a member of the Canadian Consortium for the Investigation of Cannabinoids, Doctors for Responsible Access and the Canadian Pain Society. He serves as Chief Medical Officer of Aleafia while remaining focused on clinic work as a student health physician and as a cannabinoid clinician. He also conducts palliative house visits and currently sits on the executive of the Ontario Medical Association Cannabis Interest Group.


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