Pennsylvania – Medical Marijuana Qualifications

Pennsylvania – Medical Marijuana Qualifications

by | Aug 21, 2020 | Health & Relief

Only patients who meet the medical marijuana qualifications in Pennsylvania, may get a recommendation for treatment. We recommend that you make yourself familiar with the requirements before starting the process.

A patient who has been diagnosed with any of the qualifying medical conditions is legally protected under the Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana law, as per the Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana Program (PDF).  A patient suffering from one of the following life-threatening, debilitating or otherwise severe conditions listed below and who have not responded to traditional medical treatments, might qualify for the treatment of Medical Marijuana in Pennsylvania:

  • Pain (chronic or severe)
  • Anxiety
  • Autism
  • PTSD
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Cancer
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome
  • Muscle Spasms
  • Terminal Illness
  • Seizures
  • Tourette’s Syndrome
  • Epilepsy
  • Spastic movement disorders
  • Intractable Spasticity
  • Glaucoma
  • ALS
  • Crohn’s Disease
  • Parkinson’s Disease
  • Huntington’s disease
  • Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyneuropathy
  • Neurodegenerative Diseases
  • Neuropathies
  • Opioid-Use Disorder
  • Sickle Cell Anemia
  • Ulcerative Colitis

Information about the Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana Program

  1. To enroll in the program the patient must be eighteen (18) years or older. Any patient younger than eighteen (18) years of age must have designated and registered an ‘Approved Caregiver’ on behalf of the patient.
  2. The patient must be a resident in the state of Pennsylvania and provide proof of residency either in the form of a state issued ID card or a State of Pennsylvania Driver’s License.

    * If the patient does not have a valid state issued ID card or Driver’s license, a U.S passport along with a document that serves as a proof of address such as a bank statement or utility bill might be accepted. 
  3. The patient must register with the Pennsylvania Department of Health Patients and Caregiver Registry
  4. The patient must obtain an evaluation from a certified practitioner within the state, and be diagnosed with one or more of the qualifying medical conditions listed above. 
  5. A medical professional will issue a certification to the patient if they decide that the patient might benefit from the Medical Marijuana Treatment Plan. 
  6. You must meet at least one of the medical marijuana qualifications for Pennsylvania. After the patient has received the certification from their physician, they must submit an application for a Medical Marijuana ID Card in order to be approved for the Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana Program.  All applications must be submitted online. You can submit your application with the Pennsylvania Department Of Health.
  • The online application must be completed and submitted in one session. 
  • You must pay the non-refundable application fee of $50
  • You may be eligible to pay a reduced fee if you are enrolled in Medicare, PACE/ PACENET, CHIP, SNAP or WIC and provide proof of enrollment.

If your application is approved, you will receive your Medical Marijuana Card (Patient License) within thirty (30) days. The Medical Marijuana ID Card will be mailed to your address as listed in your application. Once you have received your Medical Marijuana ID Card, approved Medical Marijuana products can be purchased legally within the state of Pennsylvania.

  • In order for the patient to be able to purchase Medical Marijuana products from licensed dispensaries, the patient must first submit their application for a Registry ID card. 

Accessing Medical Marijuana in Pennsylvania

Marijuana is classified as a Schedule I drug by the federal government, which means that doctors cannot prescribe this drug to their patients because marijuana prescriptions are illegal. Therefore, patients cannot fill a prescription for medical marijuana at a local pharmacy in the traditional way, but must instead obtain a recommendation from a certified medical marijuana doctor that will supply the patient with medical marijuana  from a dispensary, in compliance with the law of the state. A dispensary is considered by law to be a different kind of establishment to an ordinary pharmacy, this means that regular prescriptions cannot be filled at a dispensary. 

Once you have obtained your Medical Marijuana ID Card, you may purchase your medical marijuana from a certified dispensary. 

* Please note: According to Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana Law (PDF), smoking is not a method approved by the senate bill. The Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana Law states that:

medical marijuana may only be dispensed to a patient or caregiver in the  following forms: (i) pill; (ii) oil; (iii) topical forms, including gel, creams or ointments; (iv) a form medically appropriate for administration by vaporization or nebulization, excluding dry leaf or plant form… (v) tincture; or (vi) liquid. Unless otherwise provided in regulations adopted by the department under section 1202, medical marijuana may not be dispensed to a patient or a caregiver in dry leaf or plant form.

You can read more at Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana Law.