Is It Hard to Get Approved for Medical Marijuana in Pennsylvania?

Updated on May 16, 2019

Getting approved for medical marijuana isn’t that difficult for many states, including Pennsylvania.  It’s not really that difficult because it follows the same steps as any other state. One thing’s for sure though, you still need to wait for your card before you can actually go to any approved dispensary within the state. So, the question most people have is how to get a medical marijuana card in PA? No, but it can be a long process.

Getting a Medical Marijuana Card

1. Register

Before going to your physician, you must first register through the Medical Marijuana Registry. Here, you’re required to create a profile where you need to give your legal name, address, and contact information.

Other than these pieces of information, you also need to provide a state-issued ID from the Department of Transportation or a Pennsylvania driver’s license. That’s a separate process that you can look up here.

2. Get a Physician’s Recommendation

We all know that you really need a physician’s recommendation before you can actually get medical marijuana for treatment. If your physician is already registered with the department of health, you can just freely approach him or her and talk about getting a recommendation.

If you’re doctor’s not registered, then you need to find one in order to get a legal recommendation that will get you medical marijuana. This is a very crucial process and not following this step can delay the process.

Of course, the doctor can’t really give you a recommendation if you don’t have a condition that’s qualified for medical marijuana treatments. Only patients who have qualified conditions are given recommendations. The Pennsylvania government has released a list of qualified conditions that you can browse through.  

if you can’t get it on your own, you can designate two people who can assist you in getting it. it can either be your husband or wife, a parent, or even a friend. Those who aren’t 18 yet definitely need a caregiver or guardian to obtain a recommendation. These caregivers go through the same process of registering for the program and going through background checks.

3. Apply for a Medical Marijuana ID

Now that you have your doctor’s recommendation, you’re now eligible for a medical marijuana card. First, you need to go back to the registry and file for an application. Complete a form and submit it.

Prepare $50 for the application fee and wait for your card to arrive in the mail. If you’re a participant of Medicaid, SNAP, WIC, CHIP, and PACENET, you may be able to have this fee reduced accordingly. Just go to the right people to help you process this.  

If you receive your card in the mail, all you have to do is head on over to the nearest dispensary and get your medical marijuana for the first time.

4. Restriction for Patients

Now that you’re an approved patient for medical marijuana, it’s time you know about the restrictions of being one. Having a card doesn’t make you immune to arrests of whatever kind so better read on to know more.

Even if you’re a registered patient and you’re already using marijuana, there are still some restrictions that you need to remember to avoid any complications. In Pennsylvania, you’re not allowed to cultivate or grow your own marijuana. You need to obtain it from dispensaries when you need to.

Another thing you can’t do is drive when you’ve consumed marijuana. Just like driving after drinking alcohol, it’s illegal and it can get you in jail. Remember, marijuana is still considered an illegal drug on the federal level and it still has consequences. You’re also not allowed to consume the drug in a public place, do it at home or somewhere nobody can see you.

Once you’ve purchased medical marijuana, you’re prohibited from selling it to anybody. Regardless if they’re fellow patients or just friends, it’s illegal and it will seriously land you in jail. Only approved dispensaries can sell marijuana.

You also cannot smoke it or bring it anywhere near a school or a school bus. Workplaces are also off-limits if you have marijuana with you. Food and drinks that contain marijuana are also a no-no.

It’s quite a long list but it’s better that you’re safe than sorry. The state still wants to maintain control over a drug that was previously illegal even for medical use.

Getting a card is not really difficult since the process is pretty much simple. It’s just that there’s a long of waiting time, especially for the card to arrive in the mail. Once you have it, remember that there are still rules that need to be followed even though you’re a patient. Stick to them and enjoy the benefits of medical marijuana.

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