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A Review of the Texas Patient Study on Medical Cannabis, 3/6/2021 12:00:00 AM CST, On Demand More info »
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A Review of the Texas Patient Study on Medical Cannabis

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Jax James |  Viridiana Edwards |  Katharine Neill Harris, Ph.D.
1 Hour 30 Minutes
Audio and Video



Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy and Foundation for an Informed Texas have worked together on a survey of Texas patients to better understand patient needs, why they use cannabis, the conditions which cannabis helps, the effects of cannabis on these conditions, and to provide accurate data. This live webinar will delve into the methodology, results, key findings and recommendations. This webinar will include a LIVE Q&A portion at the end.


  • Katharine Neill Harris, Ph.D. and  Fellow in Drug Policy at Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy
  • Viridiana Edwards, nonresident scholar for the Drug Policy Program and a U.S. Army Veteran
  • Jax Finkel, Executive Director for Informed Texas 

This LIVE webinar with Q&A will air on 4/12/21 and then will be available for on demand viewing.



Jax James's Profile

Jax James

Executive Director

Informed Texas

Jax Finkel is Executive Director for Foundation for an Informed Texas. After a decade of involvement in marijuana law reform, she founded this 501c3 nonprofit which focuses on rural education. In her tenure, Jax has given hundreds of interviews and participated in many panel discussions and speaking engagements. Foundation for an Informed Texas produced the first medical cannabis ad, which played in rural areas on Fox News and MSNBC. She created curriculum, helped organize and execute regional workshops from 2015 to present. She believes in freely sharing information and facilitating organizational growth.

Viridiana Edwards's Profile

Viridiana Edwards

Medical Cannabis Scholar, Advocate and Entrepreneur

Viridiana is a born and raised El Paso Texas native. At the age of 17 she joined the U.S. Army and left for South Carolina for basic training. A few years later in 2009, she received orders to deploy to Kandahar, Afghanistan. In June of 2015, Viridiana received a medical retirement from the U.S. Army after 10 years of service due to injuries that were sustained while serving in Afghanistan from 2009-2010.  

Viridiana sought treatment for her injuries with Department of Veterans Affairs. Unfortunately, she was prescribed pharmaceutical medications that ended up harming her instead of helping her. Her curiosity led her to find more veterans that were also being harmed by treatment. As a result, she developed a national study on why U.S. veterans were electing to treat their maladies with cannabis in lieu of, or in conjunction with pharmaceutical medication. In 2019 her thesis study titled “The Battle Off the Battlefield: Exploring Medical Cannabis Use Among US Veterans Looking for Relief”, was published with The University of Texas at El Paso as part of her M.A. in Sociology. That same year Viridiana was accepted into the first class, in the nation’s first, Master of Science in Medical Cannabis Science and Therapeutics with the University of Maryland, Baltimore. She expects to graduate in May 2021.  

Given Texas’ cannabis laws, Edwards was curious why over 70% of her thesis study responses came from Texas veterans. On August 17, 2020, along with Foundation for an Informed Texas, Edwards designed and launched a Texas wide study on medical cannabis use which received over 3,000 responses from veterans, civilians, and individuals who left Texas for another state which has a less restrictive medical cannabis program. This data will be shared with Texas legislators for the 2021 Texas 87th Legislative Session in support of the bills which are requesting an expansion to the Texas Compassionate Use Program. Because of her study, Edwards was contacted by Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy to join their ranks as a non-resident scholar for Drug Policy.  

In November 2019 she founded CannaVi Hemp, a CBD Hemp product line with personally formulated products. Viridiana also sits on various boards including Foundation for an Informed Texas, Texas NORML, and Veterans Action Council.

Katharine Neill Harris, Ph.D.'s Profile

Katharine Neill Harris, Ph.D.

Fellow in Drug Policy

Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy

Katharine Neill Harris, Ph.D., is the Alfred C. Glassell, III, Fellow in Drug Policy at Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy. Her current research focuses on the availability of drug treatment for at-risk populations, the opioid epidemic, and the legalization of medical and adult-use cannabis. She supports policy reforms that treat drug use as a public health issue, such as alternatives to incarceration for drug offenders, needle-exchange programs, safe-consumption sites, drug testing services, expanded access to medication-assisted treatments, and greater integration of substance use and mental health services with each other and with other areas of medical service.

Neill Harris received a Bachelor of Science in criminal justice from George Mason University. She earned a master’s degree in public administration from Old Dominion University before going on to complete her Ph.D. in public administration and urban policy. She received the Old Dominion University Outstanding Ph.D. Student Award in 2014 and the Simon Scholarship for Academic Performance in 2011 and 2012. 

View her reseach library. 


We would like to thank our sponsors for their generous support! Please help us thank them by visiting their websites!

Grav Labs

As a beloved cannabis brand from Austin, Tx since 2004, GRAV is dedicated to working on the injustices within our industry. We stand beside the community of smokers and advocates nationwide who support our way of life.

MC Wellness Group




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