About the VMCA
- Mission Statement:
Veterans for Medical Cannabis Access is committed to protecting the rights of veteran patients and health care professionals by advocating for safe and legal access to cannabis (marijuana) for all appropriate therapeutic uses and to encourage research on cannabis as a treatment alternative.
- To serve veterans as an educational and patient advocacy resource on medical cannabis related veterans issues.
- To work with the Veterans Health Administration on crafting medical cannabis policy and ensure that veterans affairs medical staff are well informed of the latest medical cannabis research findings.
- To encourage the federal government to reschedule cannabis to an appropriate drug control schedule given the scientific facts that are now well known.
- To ensure that state laws allowing for the medical use of cannabis recognize medical conditions common to veterans such as chronic pain and PTSd.
Al Byrne-Lcdr, SC, USN (ret)
Founding Director of VMCA. Son of cancer patient, Howardsville, VA
Dr. Phillip Leveque, DO, Ph.D
World War II U.S. Marine Infantryman
Forensic Toxicologist and Pharmacologist
Mary Lynn Mathre, RN, MSN, CARN
Substance Abuse Consultant, Howardsville, VA
Dr. Robert Melamede, Ph.D
Associate Professor and Biology Chairman (ret)
Biology Department, University of Colorado
Dr. David Ostrow, MD, Ph.D., FAPA
Director, Ostrow & Associates
Dr. Tom O'Connell, M.D.
Dr. Tom O'Connell's Weblog
Perry Parks, CSP
CW4 United States Army Retired
Msgt Thomas Vance
United States Air Force Retired
Law Office of John Targowski, P.C.
310 East Michigan Ave Ste 501
Kalamazoo, MI 49007
(269) 290 5606
A little about our Executive Director:
A disabled United States Air Force Veteran, Michael Krawitz served from 1981 to 1986 and was injured in an accident in Guam that was deemed "in the line of duty" although not in any way combat related. Mr. Krawitz had 13 surgeries to put him back together including some done in the Air Force and some done by the Department of Veterans Affairs. His job title in the Air Force was Electronic Warfare Systems Technician. In Guam he worked on avionics equipment onboard B-52's. Since his disability - separation he attended college at Virginia Tech and although attaining a 4.0 grade point average in his Junior year of Computer Engineering he had to leave college because of his medical disability. Since leaving college Mr. Krawitz tried to use his time well as an advocate and in 1997 he was part of a small team of activists that protected Virginia's longstanding medical marijuana law from being repealed. In 1998 he was able to be part of a United Nations drug summit. He gave testimony and presented information inside the UN General Assembly Hall on the basic right to access required medicine. In 1999 Mr. Krawitz presented testimony to the National Academy of Science, Institute of Medicine and his story and that of a patient he advocated for were both chosen as reference patient stories and published in the reports written. Since 1999 Mr Krawitz has been a leader in this international field of NGO drug policy work and was a key player in the Beyond 2008 UN NGO drug summit and was responsible for submitting the grants and the arrangements for the bulk of the US drug policy reform leadership to attend and participate in the summit which can be viewed on this website: http://www.vngoc.org Mr Krawitz was responsible for a bill being submitted to Virginia's Legislature in 2009, and another in 2012, reforming Virginia's long standing medical marijuana law. In 2010 Mr Krawitz's decade long fight inside the VA for adequate access to pain management paid off with his negotiating the first ever, and favorable, medical cannabis policy within the VA. News about the Policy: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/24/health/policy/24veterans.html?pagewanted=all The Policy: http://www.va.gov/vhapublications/ViewPublication.asp?pub_ID=2362 Mr. Krawitz has done many TV, radio and print media interviews in his advocacy work including a spot on NBC network news just after the release of the landmark Institute of Medicine [IOM] medical marijuana report and another on FOX network news just after the the new VA medical cannabis policy directive went into effect. Mr. Krawitz is on the board of advisers of Patients Out of Time, a leading medical cannabis patient advocacy organization offering continuing medical education credits to medical professionals and has the job of running all aspects of Veterans For Medical Cannabis Access. Michael Krawitz Sergeant, disabled-retired USAF Executive Director VMCA http://www.veteransformedicalcannabis.org/ ><><><><>< ###
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Veterans For Medical Cannabis Access
3551 Flatwoods Road
Elliston, Virginia 24087