Cannabis Nurses on the Front Lines, But 'There Are No Paying Jobs for Us Yet,' Says Sherri Mack

Cannabis nurse (via MedPage Today)

Cannabis nurse Sherri Mack has quite a story to tell.

“In 2012, I found myself hospitalized and fighting for my life at the age of 46,” she tells CelebStoner. “I contracted an infectious disease while working in a hospital. Then I developed an autoimmune condition that defied all conventional and holistic remedies.”

That’s when the California resident (she lives in Desert Hot Springs) discovered the medicinal properties of cannabis. “I learned everything I needed to know to grow, extract and make my own medicines,” explains Mack, a nurse by trade who dubbed herself “The Green Nurse.”

She joined the American Cannabis Nurses Association and connected with Elisabeth Mack, author of Cannabis For Health: Become a Coach and her organization Holistic Caring. The Macks eventually merged Holistic Caring and The Green Nurse. 

Sherri and Elisabeth married in 2022. Sherri reached out to CelebStoner, asking for coverage of cannabis nurse brands like her own Bloom Hemp. Here’s an abridged version of our interview.

What are some issues facing cannabis nurses?

For starters, there is no adoption into healthcare yet. Nurses are mainly employed by hospitals, and none of them are allowed to discuss cannabis yet in fear of federal fund loss. There is also no real training yet, though Holistic Caring has been writing and teaching curriculum for the past six years and has trained hundreds of nurses. There are no venues for them to work in yet, because most of them are not going to work for a budtenders wage. The dispensary model is not able to bring nurses into the shops yet due to revenue challenges like 280E and taxation. With rescheduling (descheduling is preferred) on the way, that will start changing fast. 

Sherri Mack

Which are the most successful cannabis nurse brands?

Bloom Hemp is a brand that represents nurses because nurses own the company. We also support nurse job creation with our Free Nurse Line and Free Email Care Plans. There's also Megan Mbengue’s Trusted Canna Nurse and Nicole Ryan’s Hemp Quest FarmsMegan and Nicole are nurse leaders in the cannabis arena.

There are also some brands that are incorporating cannabis nurses into the fold for education and consulting like Kriva CBDA, Unity Formulas, Ask Nurse Laura and Leaf 411.

Why are nurses focused on CBD brands and not THC?

Nurses that want to focus on the medicinal aspects of cannabis focus on CBD and minor cannabinoids because that’s where patients want to start. It’s also for the business aspects. It’s too expensive to have a dispensary, starting at over $5 million. The way we work with patients is to care for all of their hemp-CBD needs with dozens of great products that we can sell and share, and then to refer them to a local dispensary to source vetted THC products. When we send them to the shop, they have a list of what to buy, how to dose it and how to stay safe. 

"Nurses are the healers, educators and supporters of patients using cannabis. Doctors are not."

CBD, CBG, CBN, THCV, CBDA and THCA are all we need to start with and we can accomplish a lot right there. And we don’t have to worry about drug testing or impairment, which clients can fear. On the business side, a CBD company is relatively affordable compared to THC, though it’s very competitive and hard to monetize due to marketing restrictions.

Do any nurses own dispensaries?

I only know of two: Primal Botanical Dispensary in Vermont owned by Annika McCann and Elevate Dispensary in Minnesota owned by Kristopher Stach.

Who are the best known cannabis nurses around the U.S.?

In addition to myself and Elisabeth, I'd point to Mary Lynn Mathre, Carey Clark, Alice O’Leary Randall, Heather Manus Sobel, Eloise Theisen, Laura Nutting Barrett, Jesilyn Dolan, Megan Mbengue, Dawn Marie Steenstra, Nicole Ryan, Nique Pichette, Janna Champagne, Katherine Golden, Rebecca Abrahams, Deanna Sommers. Denis Costello, Katie McCarthy, Heather Meehan and Kurt Kalker.

There are also organizations like the American Cannabis Nurses Association and the Cannabis Nurses Network.

In a previous email you wrote: “Nurses need a break and some recognition.” Can you elaborate on that?

Nurses are the healers, educators and supporters of patients using cannabis. Doctors are not. And most of us work for free since there are no paying jobs for us yet. We have to make our own positions thus far in the industry. The break we need is for MSOs to start hiring trained nurses to educate patients in the dispensaries. We’re the ones that can put this into context for them – discussing interactions, timing, dosing, routes and safety measures. Holistic Caring programs train all of this and beyond, providing the research and starting points of care for the most common conditions patients struggle with.

Budtenders should not be asking about medications or telling patients to stop or change any healthcare treatments. Nurses can teach patients how to discuss cannabis with their doctors and the questions to bring in and discuss with their prescriber. When we’re included in the supply chain it will be a beautiful day because every patient deserves a nurse!



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Steve Bloom

Steve Bloom

Publisher of, former editor of High Times and Freedom Leaf and co-author of Pot Culture and Reefer Movie Madness.