Pennsylvania is definitely not one of the easiest places obtain medical marijuana. In the USA at present, 29 states have allowed the use of medical marijuana, while 8 states have passed recreational marijuana legalization – Oregon, Maine, Massachusetts, Alaska, Nevada, California, Washington and Colorado. But the difficulty lies in the fact that medical marijuana for one state will not have the same rules and restrictions as medical marijuana rules in another state. Some states, such as Florida, have stringent medical marijuana restrictions, while others, such as New Jersey, have incredibly lax regulations on obtaining medical marijuana. The same applies for recreational marijuana.
A Tough Marijuana Stance
But as medical marijuana goes, Pennsylvania is probably one of the toughest states to have passed legislation. It is legal to obtain medical marijuana, but it is most certainly not easy. Pennsylvania has strict rules on who can grow and cultivate marijuana. There are only a tiny number of licenses given out for medical marijuana dispensaries and a small number of growing permits. For a dispensary license it is necessary to have $1 million in capital and the application fee is enormous. There are only around 50 medical dispensaries permitted. In other words, these permits are only available to businesses that are already huge. All small-time growers and distributers have been cut out, so big businesses already have a strangle hold of medical marijuana in Pennsylvania even before legislation has come into force.
Medical Marijuana Cards in Pennsylvania
Only certain conditions can qualify a potential patient for a medical marijuana card. This list is accused of being limited as there are other illness which are generally regarded as being treatable with marijuana, that have been included by other states. The list of conditions includes, as per Senate Bill 3:
- Multiple sclerosis
- Damage to the nervous tissue of the spinal cord with objective neurological indication of intractable spasticity
- Inflammatory bowel disease
- Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)
- Huntington’s disease
- Crohns disease
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
- Intractable seizures
- Sickle cell anemia
- Severe chronic or intractable painof neuropathic origin or severe chronic or intractable pain in which conventional therapeutic intervention or opiate therapy is contraindicated or ineffective
- Terminally ill, where a medical prognosis of life expectancy of approximately one year or less if the illness runs its normal course
- Ulcerative colitis
Obtaining a medical marijuana card in Pennsylvania is relatively difficult, in keeping with the administrative ethos of making the access to a plant as unpleasant as it can be. Qualified patients with physician’s recommendations must register with the state DOH — once registered, the patient will receive a Pennsylvania medical marijuana identification card. Patients issued with registry I.D. cards may purchase medical marijuana from an authorized state-licensed medical marijuana dispensary. The rules in relation to applying for a medical card in Pennsylvania change frequently as it becomes ready for medical marijuana legalization in 2017, so it is important to keep up to date. To find a licensed marijuana doctor in Pennsylvania you can visit MarijuanaDoctors.com
The State of Pennsylvania has a legalized medical marijuana program, which allows patients to receive a medical marijuana recommendation from a certified physician, and apply for a state-issued Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana Card, permitting the patient to purchase marijuana for medicinal use, as per Pennsylvania state guidelines.
As per Pennsylvania’s medical marijuana law, “medical marijuana may only be dispensed to a patient or caregiver in the following forms: (i) pill; (ii) oil; (iii) topical forms, including gel, creams or ointments; (iv) a form medically appropriate for administration by vaporization or nebulization, excluding dry leaf or plant form… (v) tincture; or (vi) liquid. Unless otherwise provided in regulations adopted by the department under section 1202, medical marijuana may not be dispensed to a patient or a caregiver in dry leaf or plant form.”
The “Perfect” Example
Pennsylvania is a perfect example of how not to go about the introduction of medical marijuana. As recreational marijuana is not legal in Pennsylvania, consumers are forced to do business with big corporations and have no other form of refuge, save moving to another state. The marijuana industry in Pennsylvania has been wrapped up and centralized, paving the way for corruption and low-grade marijuana with no choice given to individuals. Additionally, the list of conditions that qualify patients for a medical marijuana card needs to be enlarged.