Most users of medical marijuana lean on its natural properties and consider it a good alternative to medication. Whether such assertions have a basis is a debate for a different setting, perhaps.

And while opinion is divided regarding the efficacy of medical marijuana, you need a medical card to buy, possess or use it in Ohio. As such, you can consult with Ohio Green Team – Columbus about getting a medical marijuana card.

To enjoy some of the proven therapeutic effects of marijuana, you must have a qualifying condition – this sets you on the path to getting a medical card. Plus, you need a recommendation from a board-certified doctor in Ohio. So, what are these conditions?

The state’s Medical Board annually receives petitions to add new conditions to the list. While it accepts some, most submissions fall to be the wayside. For a petition to go through, it must contain evidence showing that marijuana can alleviate symptoms of the disease in question. This may include supporting documentation from physicians or other types of evidence. As of 2022, Ohio has 25 qualifying conditions, including:

  • AIDS
  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Cancer
  • Epilepsy
  • Fibromyalgia – is a disorder that causes muscle pain and fatigue. 
  • Glaucoma – an eye condition that can lead to blindness upon damage to the optic nerve.
  • Cachexia – a wasting away of the body, often due to an underlying chronic illness.
  • Chronic pain that does not respond to other treatments.
  • Chronic traumatic encephalopathy – a type of brain degeneration resulting from repeated head trauma.
  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) – is a neurodegenerative disease that causes muscle weakness and wasting.
  • Multiple sclerosis – is a neurological disorder that can cause muscle weakness, chronic pain, and fatigue.
  • Parkinson’s disease – is a degenerative disorder of the central nervous system that often causes tremors.
  • Crohn’s disease – is a long-term condition that causes digestive system inflammation. The symptoms include abdominal pain, weight loss, and fatigue. Flare-ups can come and go, with some periods without any symptoms. The use of medical marijuana can help alleviate the symptoms of the condition.

Following the petitions filed in 2021, the state’s medical board added three new conditions to make 25. These are:

  • Terminal illness – any incurable and irreversible disease that, without life-sustaining procedures or treatment, will result in death. According to the Ohio Department of Health, a written certification from a physician licensed in Ohio affirming you have a terminal illness is required for approval.
  • Huntington’s disease – is an inherited brain disease that results in a breakdown of the brain’s nerve cells. As a result, it impacts the body’s ability to function normally, implying aspects such as thinking and movement decline as the disease progresses. Besides, symptoms can develop early in life or when an individual is in their 30s. Medical marijuana can help alleviate symptoms of the ailment, although it cannot avert the effects of the condition.
  • Spasticity – This occurs when muscles tighten, making them challenging to stretch. When this happens, you cannot move and may have difficulty speaking. It may also cause pain and discomfort. The condition occurs due to damage to nerve passages – in the spine or brain – responsible for controlling muscle movement.

Getting the Card

To secure the medical marijuana card, you need to visit a doctor who prescribes cannabis in the state for an evaluation. Alternatively, you can do this online through a telehealth provider. The doctor will need proof of residency (a state ID, driver’s license, or passport bearing your address should suffice). They’ll also confirm whether you have a qualifying condition.

The doctor will then register you in the patient and caregiver registry and send you an activation link. Afterward, you’ll fill out an application form, pay the registration fee, and you’re good to go. Upon approval by the State Board of Pharmacy, you can print your card, and voila! You’re free to buy cannabis products at a dispensary near you.

Understand Medical Marijuana Laws

Getting your medical card doesn’t license you to buy marijuana and use it as you please. First, it helps to remember that cannabis for recreational use is still illegal in Ohio, implying you must adhere to various rules. Or else, you could find yourself in a spot of bother.

For instance, you’re not allowed to buy marijuana for your buddy Joe who doesn’t have the card, or for any other designated patient, for that matter. In short, redistributing marijuana is against the law – even if you have a card.

Also, familiarize yourself with possession limits, which your doctor determines based on your condition. The providers use a tiered approach to classify patients – ask your doctor about this for clarity.

While numerous conditions qualify for a medical card in Ohio, the onus is upon you to ensure you follow the proper procedure to acquire it. Otherwise, you might find yourself on the wrong side of the law. Talk to a state-approved doctor who recommends marijuana to start the process of getting a card.

By Manali

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