Several years ago the standard cannabis gear consisted of pipes, water pipes (i.e., bongs), and rolling papers. Now, there is a proliferation of gear that addresses a variety of needs for patients. Due to the increase of cannabis gear over the years, one of the caregiver’s key responsibilities is to establish that your patient has the right gear for their intended products. Without the right gear, the patient will be stuck with products they can’t use and may not have the budget for more.

Many patients have been using cannabis for a long time. As a result, many of them have a preference for smoking. Smoking, however, has several drawbacks. The odor from the smoke, mess from ash and tar, as well as difficulty with dosing are some of the critical disadvantages, not to mention the health issues associated with smoking.  Other options of consumption are available.

NOTE: In Pennsylvania, smoking flower is prohibited although flower is sold for vaporizing or cooking. 

Concentrates, on the other hand, are more cost-effective and allow patients more control over their dosing. Yet, many patients will insist on having flower for smoking. As a caregiver, you have no control over how the patient will consume their cannabis but do encourage them to learn about vaping and purchasing of vaporization gear.

It’s important to know what the product availability at the dispensary is and have a backup plan in case the dispensary doesn’t have the exact product the patient wants. Caregivers are responsible for matching patients to a product that matches their preference AND budget. Sometimes, this means patients will need to accept an alternative.

Hot Tip: Submit an online order to reserve the product or call ahead to confirm the product’s availability and ask them to set the product aside. 

Learn what your patient’s preferences are. Be prepared to have them struggle with adapting to change, especially if they prefer smoking, but vaporization is recommended. Evaluate your patient’s gear for cleanliness, make sure it’s in good working order. If it’s dirty and needs cleaning, use isopropyl alcohol as it will dissolve cannabis resin.  Make a list of any gear, cleaning supplies, or other purchases you need to make. Use the internet or call local vendors to establish pricing and a budget.