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The effects and impact of second-hand cannabis smoke exposure on nurses working in the community

Iglesias, M ORCID: 0000-0001-5781-2091, Pertile, J, Molloy, LJ and Chan, A 2018 , 'The effects and impact of second-hand cannabis smoke exposure on nurses working in the community' , Australian Nursing and Midwifery Journal, vol. 26, no. 4 , pp. 20-23 .

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This article explores the work, health and safety risks that may be associated with the exposure of nurses tosecond-hand cannabis smoke while working in the community. Emerging evidence suggests the benefits ofcannabis in the treatment of several chronic and terminal illnesses. This has led to some countries, likeAustralia, decriminalising or legalising the use of cannabis for medicinal purposes. Smoked cannabis is one ofseveral routes of administration. However, cannabis smoke may have an impact on those in close proximity tothe consuming patient. As a result, community healthcare workers, including nurses, may passively inhalecannabis substances while visiting patients in their home. This poses a work health and safety risk to thecommunity nurses and other healthcare workers. This review intends to raise awareness of this fact and revealsthat more research and education is needed to strengthen policies and procedures around the nursingpractices in the care of patients who choose to use smoked medicinal cannabis for symptom management. Thesuccessful use of cannabis in the treatment of a range of chronic or terminal medical conditions, such aschemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting, palliative care patients or childhood epilepsy, is currently widelydiscussed and reported around in the media and specialised literature (Suraev et al. 2017; Wong & Wilens2017; Hausman-Kedem & Kramer 2017; Abrams 2018). The use and cultivation of cannabis for any purposesin Australia, including medical research for acute and chronic disease management, has been prohibited sincethe early twentieth century (Rodman 2015).

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Iglesias, M and Pertile, J and Molloy, LJ and Chan, A
Keywords: working, exposure, community, cannabis, smoke, effects, impact, second-hand, nurses
Journal or Publication Title: Australian Nursing and Midwifery Journal
Publisher: Australian Nursing & Midwifery Federation
ISSN: 2202-7114
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2018 ANMJ

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