Saturday, July 20, 2024

Minnesota medical marijuana: a path to wellness and compassionate care

MN recently legalized recreational marijuana. HF100 legalized the sale of adult-use weed within the state in May 2023. However, you’ll need to put the champagne back on ice because sales probably won’t begin until 2025.

Therefore, the only way to legally access the substance involves getting medical marijuana in Minnesota. In this article, we outline how to apply for MMJ in MN, offering information on the substance’s legality within the state in the process. 

Apply for Medical Marijuana in Minnesota: A Quick Guide

If you’re an MN resident aged 18+ with one of the qualifying medical conditions, you’re potentially eligible for MMJ. The state’s list of conditions is lengthy and includes cancer, glaucoma, Alzheimer’s, ALS, and HIV/AIDS.

There is a significant body of research outlining the possible health benefits of marijuana. For instance, this review of studies found that using CBD and THC for Alzheimer’s is potentially more effective than using either cannabinoid alone, giving credence to the Entourage Effect theory. It seems as if cannabinoids such as CBD can suppress the causal factors of Alzheimer’s. 

Since recreational sales won’t begin for some time, only MMJ cardholders can legally discover whether the substance is effective for their medical condition.

Minnesota MMJ: A History

Governor Dayton signed the Minnesota Medical Marijuana Act into law in May 2014. Patients had to wait 13 months before program registration began, although they could buy MMJ in July 2015. 

While it was great news for marijuana advocates within the state, it was still the country’s strictest MMJ program. However, the number of qualifying conditions increased over time, and it became easier to apply. 

These days, the application process is fairly simple and necessary since possessing 2+ ounces is illegal and carries a fine of $300. If found with 4+ ounces, you could spend up to 90 days in prison. For the record, if you’re legally allowed to access medical marijuana in Minnesota, you can purchase a 90-day supply. This limit varies from one person to the next.

How to Get MMJ in Minnesota

You can get a medical marijuana card in Minnesota without expending a great deal of effort. The first step is finding a licensed MN physician and scheduling a consultation. You can use a doctor, advanced practice registered nurse or a physician’s assistant. It’s also possible to complete the process online with organizations like MMJCardOnline connecting you with doctors. 

Since the medical professional must register you with the online Medical Cannabis Patient Registry, you must give them a valid email address. You must also complete and sign a patient email acknowledgement form, which you give to the doctor. 

After a 10–15-minute assessment, the medical professional will determine whether you’re a good candidate for medical marijuana in Minnesota. After certification, you should get an email from the state’s Office of Medical Cannabis. Also, please note that you must sign up for a government account and complete your application within 90 days of receiving the doctor’s certification.

The online registration process involves filling in a form, which necessitates providing information such as your phone number & address, a government-issued ID and the email link from the Office of Medical Cannabis. You must also fill in the Patient Self-Evaluation Report. 

Once the program approves you, it will send a verification email. At this stage, you can visit a Cannabis Patient Center (CPC) in Minnesota. You need the verification email, appointment summary, and a list of medications you currently use when visiting the CPC. Incidentally, there is no physical MMJ card in Minnesota. 

Final Thoughts on Getting a Medical Marijuana Card in Minnesota

If you believe that MMJ is essential to achieving better health and wellness, follow the above instructions to gain access to the substance in Minnesota. You need to pay a $200 application fee and a similar sum for a doctor’s consultation. Doing so gives you legal access to medical marijuana in Minnesota for a year.

At this point, you must complete the renewal process if you want to retain your legal protection. While recreational marijuana was recently legalized in MN, sales are unlikely to begin before 2025. Therefore, if you want to access cannabis without facing legal repercussions, an MMJ card is the only way to do it in Minnesota at present. 

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