A fair word of warning: If you’re wondering how to get a medical marijuana card in Ohio, don’t get your hopes up too “high” (pun intended) just yet – it does not seem like it is going to be a super-duper easy process. While there has been a ton of legal information released by the state, there are still A LOT of kinks that need to be worked out, and a lot of questions that need to be answered.
Also, be aware that Ohio has not yet started issuing official MMJ ID cards yet. This is expected to start taking place in September 2018, and all cards will be issued through the State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy. *(July 2018 update: The anticipated September 8 start date for the program has been delayed until further notice, due to a number of legal complications).
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In this quick guide, we aim to tell you everything you need to know about how to get a medical marijuana card in Ohio, once everything is up to pace. As is the case with every fledgling medical marijuana program, it can certainly seem a confusing process (for everyone) at first, but we’re here to help.
As a Resident of Ohio, What is the process to Get a Medical Marijuana Card?
As per the currently provisional program, the steps to applying for a medical marijuana card in Ohio are as follows:
Step 1 – Find a physician
The first step in getting a medical marijuana card in Ohio is to locate and contact a physician that will be willing to speak with you in regard to recommending medical marijuana. This is a big process in itself, as all doctors who will be recommending MMJ in Ohio need to have what’s called a “Certificate to Recommend” from the State Medical Board.
You will be on your own when it comes to finding a qualified physician, as the state currently does not provide a list (though you can access our easy online process and connect to local doctors here).
Moreover, all recommendations must come from (and be submitted by) an Ohio state-licensed and currently practicing physician (you cannot, for example, get a recommendation from a physician in California and submit it to the state of Ohio as registration).
Additionally, you must have a “bona fide physician-patient relationship” with the recommending physician, though the term “bona fide” is not exactly defined, and is apparently up to the discretion of the state of Ohio.
Once you do locate and contact a physician who is willing to diagnose you with a qualifying condition for marijuana (see below for the list of qualifying conditions), he or she will need to submit the complete patient registration submission on your behalf – you cannot receive a signed recommendation and submit it on your own. Also, submission to the Board of Pharmacy will need to be made within 90 days of the recommending physician’s diagnosis that states you have a qualifying condition.
The complete physician recommendation for medical marijuana includes a BUNCH of different information (you can find it all listed on the state’s compliant form), but your physician’s office will be responsible for filling it all out. Once the complete registration form is finished in its entirety, the physician’s office will submit it to the state of Ohio Board of Pharmacy for review.
Step 2 – Pay the application fee
In addition to the physician’s official recommendation form that diagnoses you with a qualifying condition, you will need to pay the application fee to the Ohio Board of Pharmacy. The recommending physician’s office will notify you the cost of the fee, as it is currently not disclosed through the the state’s MMCP.
*[Also, be aware that in addition to the application fee you will likely have separate consultation fees with the recommending physician’s office].
Step 3 – Provide supplemental documentation
In addition to the fee, you will also need to submit Ohio proof of residency to the Board of Pharmacy. This can be done with:
- A valid Ohio driver’s license
- A valid Ohio identification card (issued through the state’s Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV), or
- A valid U.S. passport or passport card.
*Both the application fee and the proof of residency will be submitted at the same time as the physician’s recommendation form.
Once the physician recommendation form, the application fee(s), and the proof of residency have been submitted to the Board of Pharmacy, the application will be reviewed. If approved, you will be added to the Ohio MMCP Registry (not yet open as of July 2018), and should receive your MMJ card no later than September 2018 (*see update above – program has been delayed as of July 2018).
If you have any further questions, we recommend contacting the MMCP program directly at:
Ohio Medical Marijuana Control Program
77 South High Street, 17th Floor
Columbus, OH 43215
Phone: (614) 466-4143
What are the Costs Involved for a MMJ Card in Ohio?
This is yet to be determined. Your recommending physician’s office will notify you of any application costs/fees (in addition to their separate consultation fees). Currently, Ohio does not offer any fee waivers or reductions in cost based on income.
Related Article: 3 Ways to Get a Medical Marijuana Card Online (in Minutes)
Can You Pay Using a Credit Card?
To be determined.
What are the Conditions Required to receive a Medical Marijuana Card?
Patients in Ohio diagnosed with one of the following severe, debilitating, or life-threatening medical conditions, will be afforded legal protection under the Ohio medical marijuana law, as per House Bill 523 — “The Ohio Medical Marijuana Control Program”:
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), also know as Lou Gehrig’s disease
- chronic traumatic encephalopathy
- Crohn’s disease
- hepatitis C
- Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
- Chronic pain, severe, or intractable pain
- Multiple sclerosis
- Parkinson’s disease
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- Sickle cell anemia
- Spinal cord disease, or injury
- Tourette Syndrome
- Traumatic brain injury
- Ulcerative colitis
Can New Qualifying Medical Conditions be Added?
Petitions to add new qualifying medical conditions will be available through the state between November 1 2018 – December 31 2018. *No petitions will be accepted or reviewed prior to Nov. 1.
Also, all petitions will need to be filed electronically through the State’s website (medicalmarijuana.ohio.gov) and will need to include all of the following information listed here.
My Card Expired. How Do I Get a Renewal?
When medical marijuana cards in Ohio start to be issued in September 2018 (*see update, program has been delayed), they will be valid from the date of issuance and expire one year later, on the last day of the month the card was issued. The Board of Pharmacy will send notification to each patient 45 calendar days before the expiration date on the ID card.
In order to maintain a valid registration, a patient must annually renew before the expiration date stated on the patient’s registry identification card. Renewal submissions, fees, and required documentation may be submitted up to thirty calendar days before the registration will expire. Failure to renew a patient registration will result in an automatic suspension.
I’m From Out of State, How do I Buy Medical Marijuana?
Currently, Ohio will not accept MMJ cards that are issued from other states. However, the law requires that the Board of Pharmacy attempt “in good faith to negotiate and enter into reciprocity agreements with other states. If Ohio does enter into a reciprocity agreement with another state, more information will be posted to the OMMCP website.”
Basically what this means is that Ohio is not planning on accepting out of state MMJ cards, but keep an eye out on the website if anything changes in the future.
How much Medical Marijuana Can I purchase?
According to the Ohio Administrative Code, it appears that a patient (or their caregiver) will only be able to purchase one “whole day unit” of marijuana per day. A whole day unit is defined as:
- One-tenth of an ounce (2.83 grams) of plant material
- 295 mg of THC contained in a patch, lotion, cream, or ointment
- 110 mg of THC contained in an oil, tincture, capsule, or edible for oral administration
- 590 mg of THC contained in oil for vaporization
In terms of possession, a qualified patient or their caregiver will be able to possess a 90-day supply of cannabis. (A full 90-day supply would be equivalent to 90 “whole day units”).
For more information check the state’s official MMJ quantity/possession limits here.
Can I Take My Meds to a Different State?
No. Medical marijuana patients may face federal and local charges of transporting marijuana if they cross state lines with the drug. This is true even if the states between which they are traveling allow medical marijuana. Should you need to travel with your marijuana it would be best to contact the state’s Bureau of Health to understand the exact laws of the state you are traveling to in order to not risk breaking the law.
Related Article: How to Get Your Medical Marijuana Card By State
Who Can Use Medical Marijuana?
Patients must be at least 18 years of age.
*If a prospective patient is younger than 18, a patient registration submission must be accompanied by a caregiver registration submission in accordance with rule 3796:7-2-03 before it will be considered complete. Patients who become eighteen years of age during the time period in which their registration is valid may apply for a new registration immediately.
Can I use Medical Marijuana Anywhere?
It is important to remember that marijuana consumption is illegal on a Federal Level. It is advised to consume your medicine responsibly according to the laws of the state, which currently do not allow for the use of marijuana in public locations.
How Much Should I consume?
We are not doctors or physicians, and therefore you should always consult with a professional before using.
Additional Updates on Medical Marijuana in Ohio
Here is the most current (as of July 2018) update on How to Apply for a Medical Marijuana Card in Ohio:
The state is currently allowing residents to obtain what’s known as an “affirmative defense provision” from their physician’s office. This effectively allows eligible patients to possess marijuana and paraphernalia while waiting for the MMJ registry to open. The provisions will expire 60 days after the online registry is operational.
Be advised, however, that not all doctors are on board with the provision. According to Marijuana Policy Project Senior Legislative Counsel Chris Lindsey in a statement to Watchdog.org, the affirmative defense “was not clearly articulated within the law, and that [is leading] to an unwillingness by state regulators to adequately protect patients until the program launches … The net effect is that patients are left out of the program much longer than anyone [initially] predicted.”
Need a Medical Marijuana Card? Let us help by Starting Here