Updated on December 14, 2021. Medical content reviewed by Dr. Shatha Atiya.
Virginia is a medical marijuana state where patients can obtain cannabis to treat the symptoms of their illnesses. To access medical marijuana in Virginia, patients need written certification from a physician registered with the Board of Pharmacy. After getting the recommendation, qualifying patients should apply online for the Virginia medical marijuana card through the Initial Applications site.
The Virginia Board of Pharmacy functions as the medical marijuana program by facilitating patient access to medicinal cannabis. The purpose of this page is to equip you with the necessary information you need to be a cannabis patient through the Virginia Medical Marijuana Program. When you are ready, go ahead and book an online appointment with a medical marijuana doctor in VA near you to get your written certification in minutes.
Does Virginia have a medical marijuana program?
Unlike most states that have legalized medical marijuana, Virginia does not have a dedicated medical marijuana program. Instead, the Virginia Department of Health Professions, through the Board of Pharmacy, regulates medical marijuana in the state. Some of the functions include enabling patient access to medicinal cannabis, approving practitioners to certify patients, and regulating marijuana processors; essentially, the roles of a medical marijuana program.
As mentioned earlier, patients must obtain a medical marijuana card to obtain cannabis in Virginia. And the process includes getting a recommendation from an MMJ doctor and registering as a patient with the Virginia Board of Pharmacy. Eventually, patients that complete their registration get a Virginia medical card.
Also, there are no qualifying conditions for a medical card in Virginia. So, it is up to your MMJ doctor to determine whether you could benefit from cannabis treatment. In most cases, cannabis doctors will consider cannabis treatment if you are suffering from:
- A chronic medical condition whose treatment could lead to physical or psychological dependence.
- Or a chronic medical condition that causes severe, debilitating psychiatric disorders.
To get an idea of what medical conditions may qualify you for medical cannabis in Virginia, review our Virginia Medical Card Requirements Page.
How to register for the Virginia medical marijuana state program
Registering as a patient with the Virginia medical marijuana state program is an easy process. To begin, patients must book an appointment with a registered Virginia medical marijuana doctor and get certified. Next, certified patients should create an account with the Virginia Board of Pharmacy Web Portal (DHP Virginia). After creating an account, patients need to complete their application on the portal then scan and email the required documents to the Board of Pharmacy.
All patients should keep in mind the following basic Virginia medical card requirements:
- Only residents of Virginia qualify for the state medical marijuana program.
- Only Board-registered medical marijuana doctors in VA can provide valid written marijuana recommendations.
- The minimum age requirement for medical marijuana is eighteen (18) years old.
- Minor patients may qualify if their parent or legal guardian applies on their behalf.
Patients must pay a non-refundable $50 application fee, and parents or legal guardians applying for minor patients must pay a $25 fee.
Which documents do I need to register for the Virginia medical marijuana state program?
When applying for the Virginia medical marijuana card, you must scan and email the following documentation to the Board of Pharmacy to complete your application:
- Proof of identity. For example:
- Virginia Identification card
- U.S. passport
- Virginia driver’s license
- Proof of residency. For instance:
- Virginia driver’s license
- Virginia identification card
- Tax receipt
- Proof of age. For example:
- Birth certification
- VA identification card
- VA driver’s license
- A copy of a written certification issued by a registered medical marijuana doctor in Virginia.
Go here to get a recommendation for a VA medical marijuana card online from our doctors.
When did Virginia become a medical marijuana state?
Virginia’s legislative history with medical marijuana started back in 1979 with the Code of Virginia. The Code protected patients with a valid cannabis prescription from a doctor to treat glaucoma or the side effects of chemotherapy. Nowadays, doctors can’t prescribe medical marijuana, instead, they can recommend it to their patients. You can read more about the difference between a marijuana prescription and a recommendation, and how to get one.
Fast forward to 2018 with the passing of HB 1251. This law allowed practitioners to issue written certifications for the use of Cannabidiol (CBD) oil or THC-A oil for the treatment or to ease symptoms of any condition the practitioner determined would benefit from such use. In 2019, SB 1557 expanded further on the Code of Virginia. As a result, nurse practitioners and physician assistants could now also issue written certifications for patients to use cannabis extracts. Additionally, this legislation specified that each dose could contain a maximum of 10 milligrams of THC.
Contact the Virginia Board of Pharmacy Marijuana Program
State Jurisdiction: (DHP Virginia) Virginia Department of Health Professions – Board of Pharmacy
Virginia Board of Pharmacy, Perimeter Center
9960 Mayland Drive, Suite 300
Henrico, VA 23233
Fax: (804) 527-4472
Where to Buy Cannabis Products: VA Dispensary Locations
You can buy medical cannabis from any dispensary in Virginia approved to operate by the Board of Pharmacy as soon as you get your medical marijuana card. There are currently five operational Virginia medical marijuana dispensaries.
Also, when buying medicinal cannabis from dispensaries in VA, patients must provide a valid Virginia medical marijuana card and government-issued identification.
Virginia medical dispensaries:
- gLeaf Medical in Richmond, VA.
- BEYOND / HELLO Manassas Cannabis Dispensary in Bristow, VA.
- Dharma Pharmaceuticals Cannabis Dispensary in Washington County, VA.
- Columbia Care Portsmouth Dispensary in Portsmouth, VA.
Virginia Medical Marijuana State Rules
Patients with a VA medical marijuana card have the added benefit of legal protection when in possession of medical marijuana besides enjoying the healing properties of the cannabis they can access. Still, patients may find their registration to the Virginia medical marijuana program revoked if they break any of the Virginia marijuana laws. So what are patients not allowed?
- The Board of Pharmacy may revoke a patient’s registration if a committee establishes evidence that the patient provided incorrect or misleading information during the registration process.
- Patients, parents, or legal guardians CANNOT let another person use their registration. Moreover, tampering or modifying the registration may also lead to the cancellation of the VA medical marijuana card.
- Patients CANNOT acquire more than a 90 day supply of medical cannabis oil within 90 days.
- The Board of Pharmacy may suspend a patient’s, parent’s, or legal guardian’s VA medical card if they fail to report its theft, loss, or damage within five days of becoming aware of the incident.
Common Questions About the Virginia Medical Marijuana State Program
Below are the answers to common questions patients have concerning the Virginia Medical Marijuana State Program.