Medical Marijuana Patients

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Benefits of Obtaining Marijuana Recommendation / Prescription

As states across the nation begin to fully legalize adult-use cannabis, many may be wondering what this means for the medical cannabis dispensaries and card holders. What does it mean to be a medical cannabis patient in a world where anyone can walk into a recreational dispensary, present their state ID, and legally purchase cannabis?

Is the hassle of visiting a doctor for a medical card still worth it? Are there any real benefits?

Lower Costs & Taxes

A major benefit offered by many states’ medical dispensaries is lower cost for patients, which is extremely important for people who rely on cannabis for medical issues. Imagine needing life-improving medication, but not having it covered by your insurance—that is the reality of medical cannabis patients all over the country.

Now imagine your medicine was also highly taxed and thus very expensive since it also doubled as a recreational joy for many people—that would be the reality of patients if they only had access to recreational dispensaries.

Medical cards allow patients to have access to their medicine for lower cost, making their healthcare more affordable and accessible.

STATES THAT OFFER TAX BREAKS FOR MMJ PATIENTS: STATES WITH NO TAX ON MMJ

  • Alaska
  • Delaware
  • California
  • Washington D.C.
  • Colorado
  • New Hampshire
  • Maine
  • New Mexico
  • Massachussetts
  • North Dakota
  • Nevada
  • Vermont
  • Oregon
  • West Virginia
  • Washington

Higher Potency Limits

Dosage is extremely important when it comes to medical cannabis, and many patients need access to high-strength cannabis to alleviate symptoms. However, while recreational shops may have to abide by potency limits, medical dispensaries sometimes have more leeway.

For example, in California, recreational dispensaries are limited to 1,000mg of cannabinoids per package of tinctures or lotions. Medical dispensaries however, have a much higher threshold, and are legally permitted to sell tinctures or lotions with up to 2,000mg.

Washington State law restricts recreational edibles to 10mg per serving, however some dispensaries offer 25mg edibles for medical patients.

Alaska, meanwhile, does not have medical dispensaries despite having a medical program. Patients access cannabis from recreational dispensaries, and currently, there are no options for higher potency products for patients.

Cannabis Patients Under Age 21

Recreational shops are permitted to sell cannabis to anyone who is over the age of 21. While this makes sense for the general populous, children who are also cannabis patients wouldn’t have access. Some medical cards allow those who are age 20 and under to legally access the cannabis medicine they need for their healthcare when treating cancer, epilepsy, or other ailments. Drawing a distinction between medical and recreational cannabis is also important in reducing stigmatization of pediatric patients.

STATES THAT ALLOW MMJ CARDS FOR MINORS

  • Alaska
  • Maine
  • New York
  • Arizona
  • Maryland
  • Ohio
  • Arkansas
  • Massachussetts
  • Oregon
  • California
  • Michigan
  • Pennsylvania
  • Colorado
  • Minnesota
  • Rhode Island
  • Connecticut
  • Montana
  • Vermont
  • Delaware
  • Nevada
  • Washington
  • Florida
  • New Hampshire
  • Washington D.C.
  • Hawaii
  • New Jersey
  • Illinois
  • New Mexico

While not every medical state allows patients to grow their own medicine, many do. And the amount that one can grow is often higher for medical patients than it is for recreational consumers. In fact, the majority of states with both recreational and medical cannabis laws allow at least some wiggle room for patients to grow additional cannabis as needed.

Recreational legalization will continue to grow, often in states that have already eased into legalization with medical programs. As this progress continues, it is important not to brush the medical programs aside or forget about the patients who depend on cannabis as an integral part of their health.

Medical Marijuana Recommendation / Prescription Evaluation

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