Applying For A Medical Cannabis Card

A medical cannabis card is a state-issued ID card that allows a patient to legally purchase, consume, and sometimes grow cannabis for medical purposes. Each state has slightly different rules about how to apply and who is allowed to, but some aspects of applying are the same in every state. This article will cover some of the comparable basics of applying for a medical marijuana card. 

Meet With Your Doctor

The first thing you need to do when applying to get a cannabis card is meet with your doctor to receive an official recommendation. Most states only allow MDs (medical doctors) and DOs (doctor of osteopathy) to write recommendations. Some, however, allow nurse practitioners and physician assistants to write them as well. 

The doctor will go over your medical records, look at past prescriptions, give you an exam, and discuss your needs with you. If you meet the criteria, they will write the medical recommendation that explains why cannabis is medically necessary. This recommendation is essential to complete your application. 

The recommendation may cover such things as the dosage of cannabis, the patient's preferred consumption method (vaporizer, tincture, spray, edible, or pills), and how long the qualification will last. 

Sometimes your doctor will submit your application for you to make the process easier.

Fill Out Your Application

If your doctor does not apply for you, it will be your job to finish applying online to your state's medical marijuana program. Along with the recommendation, you will need to pay an application fee, provide proof of residency, proof of identification, and sometimes insurance information and/or a caregiver form. 

Know About Qualifying Conditions

Some states have a long list of what they call qualifying conditions. Qualifying conditions are simply certain criteria you must meet to receive a card. Some states have long lists of qualifying conditions and some states only have a few. It's important to know your state's qualifying conditions.

If you do not have a qualifying condition, you can petition a board called the Compassionate Use Board who will review your application and see if you can still be eligible.

Understand the Timeline

It takes about two weeks (depending on your state), for the application to be evaluated. If you're younger than 21 or don't have one of the qualifying conditions, it can take a few months for the Compassionate Use Board to review your case.

If approved, a medical marijuana card is typically valid for one year before you need to renew it.

Purchase Your Medical Cannabis

Once you are approved, your medical cannabis card will be mailed or emailed to you and you can then take the card to a state dispensary to purchase your cannabis. Each state has a different limit on the amount you are permitted to have and whether or not you can cultivate the plants yourself, so familiarize yourself with your state's cannabis laws.  

Medical cannabis can provide patients with much-needed relief. Look into your state's medical cannabis policies and talk to your doctor to see if you may be a candidate for a medical cannabis card.

Contact a company like Medical Marijuana Certifications LLC to learn more about medical cannabis cards.