The student union at the University of British Columbia’s Okanagan campus have approved a pilot program that will allow their student health insurance to cover medical cannabis, according to a CBC News report. This is the second university in Canada to approve allowing medical cannabis coverage under its healthcare plan after the University of Waterloo approved such a plan in 2015.
Michelle Thiessen, chair of Canadian Students for Sensible Drug Policy Okanagan, said that $20,000 of the medical budget has been earmarked for the year of coverage under the pilot program, which will begin on Sept. 1 and end Aug. 31, 2019. Thiessen admitted that the $20,000 set aside for the program will not “be able to serve that many students.”
“We’re going to collect data during this year and see how we can make this program better. If the student union decides it’s something they want to continue offering, then we can make an even better program.” – Thiessen to the CBC
How will it work? Students will need to apply to access the pilot program – and that application process is still being finalized – and a third party will evaluate the applications for student eligibility and determine the type of coverage they might need. Patients must be registered with Health Canada in order to qualify for the program.