From July 2015 forward, there were 23 states plus the District of Columbia where you can legally get medical marijuana.
If your state permits this kind of usage, then you can gain access by getting a medical cannabis card.
The following are the steps that you need to go through plus other information about this process.
How To Get Medical Cannabis Card
Here are some of some of the things you need to follow if you want to get a medical weed card.
Is Your Medical Condition Covered?
The first thing that you need to do is found out if your condition is covered.
Medical marijuana is prescribed for many physical and mental health issues. However, which conditions qualify can vary from state to state.
For instance, in Montana and Wyoming, you can only get cannabis oil, and you can only get it for seizure disorders related to epilepsy.
Some common conditions for which marijuana can be prescribed are cancer, HIV/AIDS, Crohn’s Disease, glaucoma, multiple sclerosis, and chronic pain. Some states include symptoms, such as nausea, as a qualifying condition.
You can find a list of qualifying conditions on either websites that advocate for medical marijuana or on your state’s Department of Health website. If your condition is included in the list, then you can apply for a medical cannabis card.
Using Caregiver System Medical Cannabis Card
You need to understand the difference between dispensaries and caregivers.
In the caregiver system, patients appoint a particular person as their caregiver.
The caregiver grows and provides the marijuana to the patient.
Some states require that the caregiver monitor the patient with respect to their well-being.
Most states that use the caregiver system will limit the number of patients that the caregiver can supply. States that have the dispensary system many times allow caregivers as another option.
Using Dispensary System Medical Marijuana Card
The dispensary system permits the marijuana to be sold by businesses. You can purchase the drug there if you have a valid medical marijuana card.
The limitations on dispensaries are different from state to state. Most states require their employees to go through a background check. Also, they must be a certain distance from schools and allow state inspections from time to time.
Every state has rules about how much marijuana a person can possess and legally grow. Caregivers are under this rule as well.
Reciprocity agreements exist between states so that you can sometimes use your card out of state. Arizona, Delaware, Maine, Michigan, and Rhode Island accept out of state cards. New Hampshire sometimes will accept them with a note from the issuing state. All other states only allow you to purchase if you have a card from that state.
Applying for a Medical Cannabis Card
Going to Licensed Weed Doctor
To get a state-issued medical cannabis card, you must go to a doctor who is licensed to prescribe medical marijuana.
This doctor can write you a recommendation for you to get a card.
The doctor will probably want to know your medical history and may request your medical records from your regular doctor.
Find Medical Marijuana Doctor Online
You can find a medical marijuana doctor online. Many times, medical marijuana dispensaries have the names of these doctors on their websites. Many dispensaries have doctors that are a part of their staff.
If you qualify with the doctor, then they will write you a recommendation for the card. Some dispensaries allow you to use the recommendation alone to purchase the drug. Others require the actual card.
While some states allow you to get benefits from the recommendation alone, most states will make you fill out an application and submit it to the state.
Answer and Submit Applications Medical Weed
The things that these applications will ask you for vary from state to state. Usually, the application will ask for your name, address, and phone number. Also, it will ask you about your condition and medical history.
You need to include your doctor’s recommendation with the application. Some states require that you come into their office to complete your application. Others allow you to do it through the mail or online.
Pay Fees for Cannabis Card
You are going to have to pay some fees to get your card. You’ll have to pay administrative fees to both the county and the state. Some states will reduce this fee if you have Medicaid. The fees range from $100 to $250. You need to check with your office to get the exact cost.
In order to get your card, you need to prove your identity and that you reside in the state that you are applying for. Usually, you can prove your identity with a license or state issued ID. Proof of residency can come from a rent or mortgage agreement, a utility bill, or your motor vehicle registration.
Wait for Approval – Medical Weed Card
After you have put in your application, the state will take a few weeks to approve it.
After they have approved it, there is a waiting period to receive the card.
This waiting period can be from a few days to a few weeks.
You can have your card sent through certified mail or schedule a pick up at the state health department.
Receiving and Using Medical Marijuana Card
After you have received your weed card, you are ready to get medical marijuana. If you will be going to a caregiver, then you need to choose someone that you trust.
If you choose a dispensary, then you must make sure that it will provide the kind of marijuana that you need.
Sometimes, you can be rejected from getting a card. The state usually will tell you the reason that you were rejected in a letter.
If the money to see the doctor is a problem for you, then you should pursue a discount or try to work with a local charity.
Even though medical marijuana is legal in some states, it is still illegal under federal law.
For this reason, some businesses will still test for the presence of the drug in your system. This can be a problem for you if you want to continue to work.
Some states, however, will protect the rights of medical marijuana users. You need to find out what your particular state’s policies are with regard to these issues.