Wondering how to get a medical cannabis card in New York? Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you through the process.
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New York State’s medical cannabis program is one of the most restrictive in the country. But, it is also one of the most rapidly expanding. As of July 1, 2019, there are over 60,000 patients enrolled in the program.
To qualify for a medical cannabis card in New York, you must be a resident of the state with a valid photo ID. You must also have a qualifying condition that is listed on the state’s medical cannabis program website. Qualifying conditions include cancer, HIV/AIDS, chronic pain, and several others.
To get started, you will need to visit a registered organization (RO) that is authorized to issue medical cannabis cards in New York. ROs are usually located at doctors’ offices or dispensaries. At the RO, you will need to fill out an application and provide proof of residency and identity. Once your application is approved, you will be able to obtain a medical cannabis card from the RO.
The Compassionate Care Act
In 2014, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the Compassionate Care Act into law, making New York the 23rd state to legalize medical marijuana. The law created a comprehensive medical marijuana program to provide access to quality cannabis products for patients suffering from a wide range of serious conditions.
To be eligible for the program, patients must be residents of New York state and have one of the following serious conditions: cancer, HIV/AIDS, ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease), Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, intractable pain, spinal cord damage with intractable spasticity, epilepsy, inflammatory bowel disease, neuropathy, and Huntington’s disease.
Patients must also obtain a certification from a registered practitioner indicating that they are likely to receive therapeutic or palliative benefit from the use of medical marijuana. Once patients have received their certification, they can register with the New York State Department of Health to obtain a Medical Marijuana Card.
Cards are valid for one year and must be renewed annually. Patients are allowed to possess up to a 30-day supply of medical marijuana (as determined by their practitioner), and may choose to receive their medicine in the form of flowers, oils, concentrates or edibles.
In order to qualify for a medical cannabis card in the State of New York, you must be a resident of the state and suffering from one of the qualifying medical conditions. The list of qualifying conditions is as follows:
-Positive status for human immunodeficiency virus or acquired immune deficiency syndrome
-Spasticity or muscle spasms
-Seizures or epilepsy
-Posttraumatic stress disorder
If you are suffering from one of the above listed qualifying medical conditions, then you may be eligible to receive a medical cannabis card in New York.
The Registration Process
In order to register for a medical cannabis card in New York, you will need to have a valid form of identification, such as a driver’s license or passport, and proof of residency in the state. You will also need to obtain a certification from a licensed healthcare practitioner indicating that you have been diagnosed with a qualifying condition.
Once you have gathered all of the necessary documentation, you will need to create an account on the New York State Department of Health’s Medical Marijuana Program website. From there, you will be able to register for a medical cannabis card and pay the required fee. Once your application has been processed, you will receive your card in the mail.
If you are under the age of 18, you will also need to have a parent or guardian create an account on the website and sign off on your application. Minors with a qualifying condition will be issued a “registry-issued identification card” which is valid for two years.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Do I need a medical cannabis card to purchase medical cannabis in New York?
A: Yes, all patients wishing to purchase medical cannabis must first obtain a medical cannabis card from the New York State Department of Health.
Q: How do I get a medical cannabis card in New York?
A: You must first obtain a certification from a NYS-licensed physician stating that you suffer from a qualifying condition. Once you have obtained your certification, you will then need to register with the NYS Department of Health Medical Marijuana Program. After registering, you will be issued a patient ID number which can be used to purchase medical cannabis at any registered dispensary in NYS.
Q: What are the qualifying conditions for medical cannabis in New York?
A: To qualify for a medical cannabis card in NYS, you must suffer from one of the following conditions: cancer, HIV/AIDS, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injury with spasticity, epilepsy, inflammatory bowel disease, neuropathy, and Huntington’s disease.
Q: Can I grow my own medical cannabis in New York?
A: No, under current NYS law it is not legal to grow your own medical cannabis. All patients must obtain their medication from a registered dispensary.