RN Professions

Ep. 3: Nurse Medical Cannabis Consultant

December 20, 2019 Season 1 Episode 3
RN Professions
Ep. 3: Nurse Medical Cannabis Consultant
Chapters
RN Professions
Ep. 3: Nurse Medical Cannabis Consultant
Dec 20, 2019 Season 1 Episode 3
Alli Merrell, Lolita Korneagay

In today's episode I have the pleasure of speaking with Lolita Korneagay who is a Cannabis nurse consultant. 

She  is an RN with a Masters in Business and has created her own medical cannabis consulting company. 

Lolita's nursing experience and entrepreneurial spirit lead her to creating an RN profession that she calls her "dream job!"

Show Notes Transcript

In today's episode I have the pleasure of speaking with Lolita Korneagay who is a Cannabis nurse consultant. 

She  is an RN with a Masters in Business and has created her own medical cannabis consulting company. 

Lolita's nursing experience and entrepreneurial spirit lead her to creating an RN profession that she calls her "dream job!"

Alli:
00:00
You're listening to the RN Professions Podcast episode number three. In today's episode, I have the pleasure of speaking with Lolita Korneagay, who is a Medical Cannabis Nurse Consultant. She is an RN with a Master's in business and has created her own cannabis consulting company. Lolita's nursing experience and entrepreneurial spirit led her to creating an RN profession that she calls her dream job.
Lolita Korneagay:
00:59
Hey. Hi. How are you? I'm good. How are you?I'm good. That's so nice to have you here. And actually, I'm super excited because, um, I you know, I'm an MS nurse, and so my patients deal a lot with the whole cannabis conversation. So I know that what you're providing is super valuable for them. And they're kind of in a weird space. Not having a lot of, um there's
Lolita Korneagay:
01:22
not a lot of
Alli:
01:23
support behind, you know, researching that kind of thing especially. You know, they kind of feel like it's dirty. They don't know where to go, who to ask questions. So when I saw what you were doing, I was I was floored. I'm super excited to talk to you. So they tell us just like a little bit about how you got to this place.
Lolita Korneagay:
01:42
Off course I can. Well, first, I'm so happy to be here. I love podcast. So this is awesome. And, um what? My story is not like, unlike other people's stories. But essentially a few years ago, I was diagnosed with medical conditions that caused me extreme pain. I ended up having 1/2 surgery. My surgeries didn't help. So I was in a situation where I've been a registered nurse for over 15 years. I know a lot about medicine, but I knew that I did not want to get onto, like, the opioid track and have to be, you know, taking pain medicines every single day of my life. So I started researching cannabis for my personal use. I figured that I know that. And a doe tickly people have used it for cancer to cure their cancer and, you know, other diseases. So I figured, if it can help, them surely could possibly help me. My issue was I didn't know how to use cannabis, right? I knew I wasn't smoker. I didn't want to smoke it. But I heard about the oils, but I really didn't know what they did. I didn't know how much to use. I didn't have to use it like I had so many questions. So I just want to do research in research and research. And eventually I created a treatment plan for myself that actually resolved all of my symptoms and allowed me to live a better quality of life. So that's when my light bulb went off. I said, if I had such a hard time trying to use cannabis for myself, I'm sure other people are having the same issue. And that is how I officially became a can business.
Alli:
03:05
That's so awesome. So I'm he's totally new for us. I mean, legally speaking. So where did you even start to find your information? Like, how did you find that like
Lolita Korneagay:
03:14
legit. I literally immersed myself in the cannabis industry. I didn't even know that there was a canvas industry symbol. What I he was I started Googling first was my very first thing. And then I came across like YouTube videos and different, like Web conferences So I would sign up and watch all the experts talk. And then I started ordering books from Amazon and I would read the books and then when it became legal and how or you have they started tohave like meet up. So I started going to the meet ups and then they had conferences. Now what's the conferences? So it took me, like, two years to try to figure it all out for myself because I was so new to the industry. I just kind of went whenever I heard the word cannabis. I just kind of showed up.
Alli:
03:58
Wow, that's so awesome. So tell me, like specifically what cannabis is what's involved with cannabis.
Lolita Korneagay:
04:05
Okay, so, cannabis, when we say cannabis or when I say cannabis, that just means the entire plant, OK, so just imagine the actual cannabis plant growing from soil within that cannabis plant. You have a lot of different components. So CBD in th see are just two of the many, many components at the cannabis plant has. So when I referenced the work cannabis, I mean every single thing that is included within that one plant
Alli:
04:34
that's so interesting. So there's probably, I'm guessing different pieces of the plane that are used for different ailments. So, like, do you have specific disease processes that you've got your own care plans for with the specific parts and like tell me what that looks like,
Lolita Korneagay:
04:53
right? So the two main parts of the cannabis plant that you hear people talk about all the time are the cannabinoids, So T, H C and C V. D are two of the over 113 cannabinoids that the cannabis plant has right? So worst, very surface of this plant that we're trying to explore a research on DSO. You also hear people talk about her pings a lot. Turpin's are the aromatic, like the aromatic profiles and the flavors of the plant. And with Inter Pedes, there's over. There's hundreds of those two within this one plant, so you have your Canavan oId age Ritter Peas and both of them are beneficial to people for various reasons now, we also have what we know as the cannabinoid system. When I went through nursing school a 1,000,000 years ago, they didn't teach me about the India cannabinoid system. Right. So when I started researching cannabis and found out that I have a whole system of my body that directly we have Recep to that cannabis reacts to that blew my mind. So I had to do a bunch of research trying to figure out what exactly that in the cannabinoid system was what the receptors were and how the cannabis actually interacts with those receptors within our body. Naturally. And once I figured all out all of that, I learned that most diseases, no matter what disease it could be from AMs to fibromyalgia to fibroid pain too, You know, headaches or whatever. Ah, lot of these diseases are caused by, um, dis balance of our indica nominally system because our into cannabinoid system's primary job is to keep us in home meal Stasis at all times. So if you can kind of help that home, you'll spaces out by adding some cannabinoids into your system from the marijuana plant. Then that can help to alleviate a lot of the symptoms that your cur with whatever illness that you're dealing with.
Alli:
06:50
Wow, I had no idea there was so many different pieces of this. I mean, of the whole cannabis profile. That's amazing. So,
Lolita Korneagay:
06:59
yeah, it is complicated. Then people, people just think like all you just smoked a joint. But in reality, if you want to use it medically, it's it could get very complicated. Yeah. So tell me a
Alli:
07:11
little bit about that. I mean, like most of the patients that you're, um, that you have dealt with, What is the method of dozing like, you know, I could because specifically for me, the reason I ask is because a lot of my M s patients are like they would rather suffer than smoke something because they feel like that's, you know, like it's wrong. Like it's bad. So what are the other methods of getting your your medication on board or or writing that can't. How do you say Indo can
Lolita Korneagay:
07:40
Indo kidnapped? Yeah, it's about
Alli:
07:43
two years to learn how to say that too, right?
Lolita Korneagay:
07:46
All of these words. So what's interesting was I was the same way as your patients. I was like, I'm not smoking anything like that wasn't an option for me. I fast forward all these years later. I still don't smoke. So So you can You can fix yourself without smoking. So, um, I've did research and I found about 15 or 16 ways that you can use cannabis without smoking a joint. So it's amazing you can actually do sublingual. You can do topical. You could do transdermal. You could do a rectal You can D'oh. Um, you could do patches like there's so many of the edibles, as you already know. So there's so many different ways that peop okay, use the plant without actually having to feel like they're quote unquote doing something bad.
Alli:
08:30
So have you seen? I mean, especially in California since its newly legalized. Are they kind of refining how this is? I mean, I'm sure it's kind of exploding. There's probably so many different companies now making their own. So how do you go about finding legit cannabis?
Lolita Korneagay:
08:47
Right, so this is very important. Honestly, So you want to make sure that you get the way to make sure that you're getting lab tested Cannabis is to make is to make sure you buy it from a license dispensary. Right? So it's kind of just like with any other drug, Would you go down the street and Axl want to give you a a bottle full of Tylenol? Or would you go to CBS and get your talent? You would probably go to CVS because you trust that wherever CBS is buying that talent off from, they've already did their due diligence before they sell it to you. And the same thing happens with the dispensary. You want to make sure you just don't go to like the person on the corner and by your cannabis, you want to go to a dispensary that has a license with the state. Therefore, you know that they're buying products that are good products to use.
Alli:
09:36
Okay, that makes sense. So So you were kind of your first patient. You experimented on yourself, kind of found out something that works. So tell me a little bit about how you're like nursing journey from nursing school, graduation up until where you are Now, how has that kind of maybe overview some of the roles you've had that have helped you figure out how to do what you're doing now,
Lolita Korneagay:
09:59
Okay, No problem. I think that the cool thing about nurse English I'm sure you've heard before is that you can pretty much transition and do anything because you're you're nursing skills. Stay with you forever. So when I first graduated nursing school, I was a critical care nurse. I work in the I C u. I did some p a c U on. And then, um, in a little G i lab, which is kind of ransom. After I left the hospital, I worked for a medical device company, and I taught people had a use chemo dynamic monitoring like in the I C u. I was in charge of that. And then after that, I did a little, um, um case management. So that's how I ended up getting into a worker's comp case management. I've done that for years and years. Eight years, which is, you know, a little difference. Um, and so those were the primary roles. Of course. I stuck my hand into a couple of other things. Like once. I tried to do like a the plastic surgery nursing, but that wasn't for me. I didn't last very long in that type of position, but I just feel like every position, everything that you learn along the way you just take with you and it helps to prepare you for the next episode.
Alli:
11:09
That is so cool. So you're kind of building and your skills as you go along. So that's kind of the perfect. It's almost like you're meant to get to where you are now from just from being an educator and managing case, caseloads and all of that. So tell me when you decided that man, If I am going through this and I'm, you know, educated. I know what I'm looking for. And it's taken me this long. How did you put together your business than your programs and tell me a little bit about how that works.
Lolita Korneagay:
11:38
You know, you actually reminded me one thing I forgot actually did teach for a little while at a local college here. And so I You're absolutely right. I think that everything I did along the way prepared me for this. I finally feel like I found exactly what I'm supposed to be doing. Like I wake up every single morning and I'm so excited and I go to sleep thinking about this because I'm so excited for the next day. And so I feel that each little thing I did, like when I was teaching, um, nurses and doctors how to use medical devices, I was learning how to present in front of a crowd. You know, when I started when I went into teaching l've Ian's at a local college. I was learning how to create create test. I was learning how to create daily lesson plans. You know, all of those type of things that I would have never learned how to do if I would have just stayed in the hospital. So I combined those things into creating this class that I now teach two nurses and other license medical professionals. Um, about how, and I essentially give them our certificate to become medical cannabis consultants. So all of the things that I've did along the past 15 years have kind of led me to this one particular point that I met now, so they all kind of worked together.
Alli:
12:53
So you are now you've created this program where your trading other medical professionals on how to counsel patients who are needing cannabis therapy
Lolita Korneagay:
13:05
yet see, my original thought was I wanted to teach everyone how to use cannabis because once I learned how to use it, I was like, Oh, my God, it changed my life. Like I'm not a drug addict. I you know, it's actually enhance my life. You know, I stopped drinking alcohol like I lost weight like everything was like, wonderful, right? But I think that I cannot personally touch, you know, every person in America or the world. So what I have created it's a system where I essentially teach the teacher. So I teach medical professionals and I started with nurses because, you know, nurses are the most trusted professionals out there. And I figured if I could teach a nurse everything that I know and then they in turn can go back to their local communities, and they can teach their patients in their neighbors how to use cannabis for better qualities of life.
Alli:
13:53
So I see how this is super exciting just because of the field that I'm in and the patients that I see. But have you experienced any pushback or what that looked like for you? I understand the value of using cannabis, you know, medically speaking. But I know that it's it's still kind of taboo, even though it's legal. So I was curious to see if there's been any push back for you,
Lolita Korneagay:
14:13
girl. Yes, that's a huge stigma, even though is legal, you know, is becoming legal in various states all over America, and they're even thinking about making it federally legal. One day is still so many people that associate it with just being a drunk, you know? And so, growing up, you know, we're taught that drugs are bad. If you do drugs, you're going to die. You're going to kill yourself. You know, all this type of stuff, right? And so because marijuana, right? Just I know it because marijuana is officially still classified as a schedule one drug which is equivalent to like heroin they're making It is the equal thing. When is really the hut? So a lot of people, I just still feel like Oh, my God, that's a horrible thing. And you're gonna go to hell because you're using marijuana. So part of what I do is I just do a lot of, like, podcast like this and speaking engagements so that I can educate people that it's normal is actually better to take something grown from soil than to take something that's manufactured in a lab.
Alli:
15:14
Totally. So. An enemy in the side effect profile is what non existent.
Lolita Korneagay:
15:19
Well, you can only well, there are some side effects if you use too much too fast, right? So and that's what I call overindulging. So when people just get they use a whole bunch of cannabis at one time, you can't get nicked. It have side effects like diarrhea, vomiting, hallucinations. But things like that, they will go away. They're not permanent. And then you've officially learned your lesson that you're not gonna use too much too fast again. So the next time that you're gonna go low and slow, it won't have any of those side effects.
Alli:
15:49
Okay, cool. And actually, I got an interesting I don't know if I'm gonna put this in or not, but I do have a question for you just because you're the expert. I just recently heard that CBD can actually be like a Narcan for th see. Is that true?
Lolita Korneagay:
16:03
Yeah. Yeah, we call that s So what what officially happens is it deregulates t x C. So without getting too technical, th see actually can connects with certain receptors in your body. And CVD doesn't connect to those same receptors, but it Allah hysterically connects to those receptors, and it down regulates it, so that's absolutely correct. If you use too much t X C, then you could just take a large quantity of CBD and it'll bring your hideout.
Alli:
16:33
Wow, it's seriously like a magical plant. That's, um okay, so I just kind of want to see um So you your training other nurses, what does that look like? Do you have to have a specific certification to do this type of training like art is the regulation because it's in the medical field. What does that look like for you?
Lolita Korneagay:
16:55
So what's interesting is, um, no, there's no regulations right now because not federally legal right? Once it becomes better federally illegal, then I'm sure they will be like federal regulations, just like everything else for right now, we're still coming in that great area, trying to figure out what's right and what's wrong. So officially, what I did was there wasn't like a in person class specifically for medical specials regarding cannabis. Like when I started this a couple years ago. So I created that because I felt like nurses learn better from other nurses and we feel more comfortable around each other. And so I felt that if I can give them a full comprehensive training program, then they will feel like they're competent enough to go out and talk about the plant. And that's what I created. My course is eight hours long, We're together all day long. I tell you, every single thing that I note till you Actually, they're feeling like you're rich ago. You're charged a know howto counts, counsel people on using cannabis for help.
Alli:
17:54
Okay, So tell me, like a little bit about your your schedule as a cannabis nurse educator and everything that you're doing just for the other nurses that might be interested And maybe how to reach out to you to find out more.
Lolita Korneagay:
18:06
Yeah. So, um Well, because I'm entrepreneur, I work for myself 100%. I don't work for anyone else, so my schedule is a little bit differently. This is not like a side hustle for me, you know, So I Actually, I do my classes once a month, and then my schedule every single day is about, like, marketing thing and promoting and advertising my classes and then also doing the logistics regarding the, um you know, all the back end type of stuff that I have to do. Um, And then I accept patients by appointment on Lee. So I have the ability where people can schedule appointments with me on my website. When I do get those appointment scheduled on my website, then, um you know, I called them similar to this type of telephone call, and then we discuss their issues, and then I developed treatment plans for them, and then I follow up with them as needed. So my time is kind of spent between, um developing my business and then also consulting with patients.
Alli:
19:05
So for the nurses that you d'oh, that you are educating, is there some sort of follow up with you just to kind of give them more ideas on how to how to reach out to
Lolita Korneagay:
19:14
keep moving? Yeah, so yes. So it's pretty good. I am not a one and done type of person because I felt like there's There's some other like online classes that you could take. You select took it. But you still have questions, and you're like, Well, I don't know what to do next. So So I offer offer like Mentor ships to every single person that takes my class. They have the ability to email me or call me and ask me questions forward. I'm completely open for that. Also set up a Facebook, a private Facebook group just for people who take in my class. That way we can bounce ideas off of each other if you have questions. If I'm not available to answer that, you can go to your other alumni. You could discuss those situations with them and then in a distant I'm doing the first Alumni conference next year in Vegas. So I'm gonna have everybody. He's taken my class throughout the year they're gonna meet in Vegas, they're gonna get a Southerner, and we're just gonna learn whatever makes it because I have Speaker was coming in so that we can continue our educational journey together.
Alli:
20:09
Wow, that's so awesome. Congratulations. I mean, you saw an opportunity and you hop down before the federal government ruined it.
Lolita Korneagay:
20:18
Yeah. You know, it was one of those things. It just feels like like I was telling you first started. It just feels like this is what I was meant to do. Like, it doesn't even feel like work. It just feels like I'm just doing what I'm supposed to do every day.
Alli:
20:30
That is fantastic. Isn't that the wonderful thing about nursing is you just kind of go through this journey and then you end up at this place that you feel like, How did I get here? Why's it so awesome? Girl,
Lolita Korneagay:
20:42
let me tell you, I've had some nursing jobs that I hate it through. And then you feel like you have to work them because you're like I have written and I have bills to pay. So I have I have to take this job, and then you go to work every single day, just kind of set and some. And I know you work with some of those nurses who are grouchy every single day, and that's because they don't want to be there, but they don't have a plan began. They don't know what to do next.
Alli:
21:05
And honestly, don't you feel like as a nurse. There's kind of this pressure to like I love your job no matter what it is like. Oh, you're because you have this giant big car. And
Lolita Korneagay:
21:15
just like so I don't like med surge. No. Yes, they feel like you're just supposed happy every single day and life is wonderful. But you have no, that you really don't. I didn't find that joy for a long time. Let me tell you, it took me a while to actually find a nursing joy. And for the beginning of my nursing career, I kind of was like, Maybe I made a mistake. You know, I was like, Maybe I should don't do this because I don't feel that joy that people talk about every single day. So if anyone's listening out there and they feel like that, just no, you know it'll come, you'll find your place eventually.
Alli:
21:51
And that's the whole reason for this podcast is just to get nurses who have found they're sweet spot and talk like you're talking about your job just to kind of give them hope. Just keep going, keep meeting people trying new things, you'll figure it out. Um,
Lolita Korneagay:
22:07
yeah, and there's so many things to do. I think within nursing you can literally you can find a specialty that you like. If you want to just hop around kind of like what I did at the beginning. Or you can create your own specialty. Kind of like I'm doing right now so you can figure it out.
Alli:
22:25
Man, that's so exciting. So on that note, if there is something you could say to the nursing students were listening What? What would you tell them?
Lolita Korneagay:
22:35
I would tell them not to follow the money. Uh, don't do that. Because that's what I was trying to do when I first graduated. I wanted to get the job that paid the most. In a reality, you need to try to find your passion and not follow the money, the money, But he will come. What's your mantra? Fashion
Alli:
22:53
wonderfully said That was awesome. So is there anything that I didn't ask you that you that you want to mention?
Lolita Korneagay:
22:59
Um, no, I'm just happy that you're doing this type of things so that you can help people find their passion in nursing. You know, it's a big nursing world out there And don't feel like you have to be like pigeonholed. It's doing one specific thing. Do whatever you want to do.
Alli:
23:14
Totally. You're a good example, Lolita. So if nurses want to know more about you, where can they Where can they find you?
Lolita Korneagay:
23:20
Go to Can soon see a n s o m dot com In all of my information is there and you can reach out. You can email me or whatever. It's all right there. Thank you
Alli:
23:30
so much. I learned so much from you and I like, honestly, you just, like, re energize me to keep keep reaching out. Keep going. Because just hearing your story and the fact that not only are you, like, physically field but, like mentally, emotionally and you're helping others, it's awesome. I just I'm so glad that you are here.
Lolita Korneagay:
23:51
Thank you. Now keep going. Definitely. Keep what you're doing up.
Alli:
23:56
And there you have it. Thank you again to Lolita for sharing with us. Her role as a medical cannabis nurse consultant if you haven't yet, please subscribe to the R in professions podcasts Follow me at our end Professions on instagram and please join in on the conversation. We have so much to talk about. And if you'd like to be on the podcast to share your specialty and nursing journey, we'd love to hear it. Please connect with me at Ali at our in professions dot com. That's a l l I At our end p r o f e s s i o n s dot com
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