Living in a state that allows the use of medical marijuana to alleviate symptoms of certain conditions is a benefit that not everyone has. However, if you’ve never had an MMJ eval before to see if you can obtain a medical marijuana card, you could be a little nervous about what happens at the appointment. Fortunately, it’s not usually a major process to determine whether or not you’re a candidate for medical marijuana use.

Appointment

To begin with, you’ll want to get an appointment with a doctor that has experience evaluating patients for medical marijuana use. Now that half the states in the U.S. have legalized medical marijuana use for at least some conditions, you should have no problem finding a doctor who is familiar with the process of obtaining a medical marijuana card. If you know someone who already has a card, you may want to seek a recommendation to a doctor you know will understand the issues at hand.

Consultation

At your appointment, the first thing that will happen is you will have a consultation with the doctor about why you’re seeking a medical marijuana card and whether or not you’ve already been diagnosed with a condition that can be managed with marijuana in your state. There are nearly 200 medical conditions that have been shown to respond positively to marijuana treatment, but not all conditions are covered in every state. You will need to have a diagnosis that is treatable with marijuana to receive a medical marijuana card.

Examination and Evaluation

The doctor will then give you a complete physical examination to identify any potential issues with recommending marijuana as an alternative and to have a baseline health assessment that can be monitored after you start using marijuana. If you do not already have a diagnosis, your doctor may be able to provide you with one at this time. However, you may also need to have further testing done to confirm a diagnosis before a recommendation can be made. 

medical marijuana

Recommendation and Certification

Once the examination and evaluation are complete, and the doctor has determined that you would benefit from medical marijuana use, they will provide a recommendation and certification for medical marijuana use. This is not your card, but you will need this certification before you can apply for your card, and you won’t be able to get one if you don’t go through the evaluation process. 

Application

After you’ve obtained a recommendation and certification for medical marijuana through your doctor, you can apply for your card through your state’s application process. This process differs by state, so the instructions for this step are not provided here. In general, you will fill out an application either in person, through the mail, or online, attach your doctor’s recommendation and certification, and pay a processing fee. Then, it’s just a matter of waiting for your card, which usually arrives within a couple of weeks.

Conclusion

Obtaining a medical marijuana card is not a difficult process and doesn’t vary all that much from getting a prescription for any other medication. The only difference is that you won’t be able to go to a traditional pharmacy once you have your card in hand. You’ll need to find a medical marijuana dispensary and present your card there.