How to get a medical marijuana card in Massachusetts during COVID
Massachusetts is the first US state to restrict the use of marijuana back in 1911, except when cannabis is prescribed by a licensed doctor. There are ongoing arguments on whether the ban was executed in 1914 or in 1911. Nonetheless, decriminalizing the possession of marijuana took nearly 100 years in Massachusetts’ history. In 2008, medical marijuana was finally legalized and, from then on, the state has continued to pass reforms in efforts to regulate medical marijuana distribution within the state.
On November 8, 2016, voters approved Question 4 which officially made possession and cultivation of marijuana legal for adults. By 2018, sales began with two licensed marijuana stores. As of May 2019, there are already 50 Registered Marijuana Dispensaries (RMDs) in Massachusetts.
To be able to purchase medical marijuana from local dispensaries, patients must be at least 21 years old, be diagnosed with a debilitating disease, and are legal residents of Massachusetts. There are two ways to apply for a medical marijuana card in Massachusetts: by mail or online. However, as recent times call for extreme precautionary measures against contracting the COVID-19 disease, patients are advised to apply for a card online.
Due to the outbreak of COVID-19, the Massachusetts government has ordered stores that sell non-essential cannabis products closed. However, the governor also declared medical marijuana as essential, therefore, allowing the continued sale of medical marijuana in RMDs, provided that they exercise caution when dispensing products.
MMJCCC’s telehealth portal is open for patients needing to apply for a medical marijuana card. We provide telemedicine services that will guide patients through the online application process, from certification to registration. Simply book an appointment with us to schedule an online consultation with one of our qualified healthcare providers.
The online application for a medical marijuana card in Massachusetts can be done through this three-step process:
Step 1. Obtain a Certification
The first step to getting a medical marijuana card in Massachusetts is to get certification from a qualified healthcare practitioner. This means that the physician must be licensed in the state of Massachusetts and must possess a Massachusetts Controlled Substance Registration.
The healthcare provider will review your medical records and check if you are diagnosed with a medical condition that will qualify you for medical marijuana use. Make sure to bring records of your medical history and diagnosis when you visit your recommending provider. The qualifying conditions specified by the state’s MMJ program are:
- Hepatitis C
- Crohn’s Disease
- Multiple sclerosis
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Other debilitating conditions, progressing to such an extent that one or more of a patient’s major life activities is substantially limited, and causing:
- wasting syndrome,
- intractable pain,
- impairing strength or ability.
The healthcare practitioner will carefully review your medical records and thoroughly discuss the effects of medical marijuana and how this has the potential to address your condition. Licensed physicians and nurse practitioners can give you a certification.
If the healthcare provider determines that you are, in fact, diagnosed with a qualifying condition and that medical marijuana is a viable treatment alternative, the provider will issue a certification and give you a PIN number. You will need this PIN number during your online registration.
Step 2. Register Online
After obtaining a certification from a registered practitioner, log on to the Massachusetts Cannabis Industry Portal (MassCIP) registration page through this link: https://www.massciportal.com/login-register.
If you are a first time medical cannabis patient, you will need to create a new account.
During the registration process, you will need to provide the following information:
- Your PIN number
- A current valid form of identification, such as:
o driver’s license issued in the state of Massachusetts
o Massachusetts identification card
o US passport
o US military card
If you submit a US passport or a US military card, you will also be required to submit proof of your legal residency in Massachusetts by presenting any one of the following documents:
o US marriage certificate from the last 6 months
o Property tax or excise tax
o First-class mail from federal or state agency
o Current Massachusetts-issued professional license
o Mortgage, lease, or loan
o Current Massachusetts motor vehicle registration card
o Utility bill from the last 60 days
o Tuition bill from the last 60 days
o Car insurance policy or bill from the last 60 days
- A recent photograph of yourself taken within 6 months. You may also use your MA RMV photo.
As online registrations have recently been transferred from Virtual Gate (VG) to the MassCIP, patients who have existing VG accounts will have to retrieve their VG accounts by logging on to https://patient.massciportal.com/mmj-patient/signin.
After creating an account in MassCIP, you can then start your registration with the Medical Use of Marijuana Online System or MMJ System.
A $50 fee must be paid to complete your application process.
Applications are processed in the order they are received.
Step 3. Wait For Your Card
Once you get approved for a medical marijuana card, you will receive notification via email and your card will be mailed 1-2 weeks after this approval.
You can start using your medical marijuana card immediately after getting approved. While waiting for your plastic card, you can print a temporary card and use it within its 4-week validity. Your medical marijuana card is valid for one year.
Visit a state-licensed dispensary and purchase the prescribed medical marijuana or have your designated caregiver assist you. Make sure you have the card every time you are in possession of medical marijuana.
As part of the state’s preventive measure to curb the rising number of COVID-19 patients, the Cannabis Control Commission has temporarily authorized the release of medical cannabis products through curbside pickup. Medical Marijuana Treatment Centers (MTCs) may now process orders over the phone or online and have the medical marijuana products available for pickup in their parking area or within the facility’s premises, given that the MTC agents have fully verified the patient’s registration, age, and allotment.
The first step is to make an appointment with an online tele healthcare website such as PlushCare. cialis for sale You will meet with your doctor online for a virtual chat where you will discuss your current health issues, your medical history, and what medication you are taking.