The process of becoming a medical marijuana patient is pretty straightforward. First, the patient needs to get an evaluation. The requirements are different for every MMJ-legal state. As long as the patient meets the condition requirements for their state, they have nothing to worry about. Once a patient has had an analysis, they will either be issued a recommendation for medical marijuana or denied. From my experience, denial isn’t very common. This is probably because the requirements for each state can easily be found online. Most patients know if they qualify or not before going into the office.
When a patient receives their recommendation, it’s usually in the form of a paper certificate and a card. The paper certificate is the official recommendation and it should have the doctors signature. This piece of paper is what you need for most dispensaries. The ID card is a nice-to-have but it’s not the official recommendation. Some dispensaries will accept the ID card, but it’s always better to have the official piece of paper with you when you go to a dispensary for the first time.
I got my first recommendation from the Hollywood Easy Clinic in Los Angeles. The process was painless and pretty fast. They let me make an appointment which sped up the process a lot. They were professional and didn’t make me feel weird for being at a pot doctor. I would definitely recommend them.
You’re a Patient, Now What?
After receiving a recommendation, you’re officially a medical marijuana patient. With this status comes some positives and negatives. If your employer finds out, it could change the way they view you. I wouldn’t be surprised if they ended up letting you go for an unrelated reason after they found out. It’s best to keep this kind of thing private. Also, you can no longer operate a firearm legally after becoming a patient. I don’t even think you’re allowed to own one, but I’d check with your state rules first before giving up your 2nd amendment rights.
The good part about becoming an MMJ patient is that you will have easy access to, hopefully, clean weed. I have seen some of the major canna-culture sites report that some dispensaries have been selling weed with illegal pesticides. This market is not strictly regulated, so it’s really up to the dispensary to check the quality of their weed. To make sure you’re getting good quality weed, you can shop at dispensaries that publish their lab results. This way you’ll know exactly what’s in the particular strain you decide to pick up. From my experience, this is actually a rare thing. Most dispensaries don’t publish lab results, which means they probably don’t have their buds tested. I wish bud testing was standard given how accessible the technology is, but it’s not the standard yet. Whether your dispensary of choice test their weed or not, you still should be cautious with your purchases. This is a grey market after all.
I hope this article gave you some insight into the process of getting your medical card and what to expect.