Start by visiting government websites, like the Department of Health and Senior Services. There you will find lists of all the dispensaries that are legally operating in your state.
There are now 33 states and Washington D.C. that have legalized medical marijuana. If you live in one of these states, you can legally buy and use cannabis to address specific medical needs.
From state-to-state, you’ll find that the laws concerning medicinal use vary, like how to transport medical marijuana from place to place. One thing most states have in common, however, is the process of making a medical marijuana purchase.
No matter where you live, you’ll want to be certain that you understand the procedures that are in place. Here’s what you need to know about legally buying medical marijuana in your state.
Educate Yourself on Qualifying Conditions
Like any other medication, marijuana is only approved for medicinal use for treating specific conditions. These qualifying conditions do vary from state to state and are outline in their cannabis laws.
You will see common threads across the country. Chronic pain, terminal illness, cancer, and PTSD are all common qualifying conditions for medical marijuana. Even so, you’ll still want to double-check to be certain your condition is on the list before you move forward.
Get Authorized by a Doctor
Before applying for a medical marijuana ID card, you’ll need to visit a doctor to get a recommendation. In some states, only doctors who are licensed to recommend medical weed can authorize patients to apply for a medical ID card. Once you have gotten their thumbs up, you’ll apply for your ID through the department in your state regulating medical cannabis.
Visit a Dispensary
Once you’re registered as a medical marijuana patient, you’re ready to make a purchase. You should be able to find what you need at one of the dispensaries your state has licensed. Start by visiting government websites, like the cannabis portal at CA.gov or the Department of Health and Senior Services. There you will find lists of all the dispensaries that are legally operating in your state.
If you live in a state where both medicinal and recreational marijuana are sold, you’ll want to differentiate between dispensaries. Some will specialize in medical cannabis while others are more suited for recreational users.
It might take a few tries to find the right fit based on what is available at each location. You can do a little research beforehand by looking for reviews of specific dispensaries online before you head into the storefront. Once you’ve found a good fit, take your time talking with the staff working at the dispensary to find out what products will best suit your medical needs, your lifestyle, and your budget.