The Status of Cannabis Legalization in Minnesota
With White Earth Nation voting to legalize medical cannabis by a 994-150 tribal vote, patients who seek relief from its many healing properties can now consume it without penalty, reports Red Lake Nation news. Six years after the state of Minnesota legalized medical cannabis in 2014, “the measure allows the Tribal Council to create its own rules governing medical cannabis on the reservation that wouldn’t be subject to Minnesota’s medical marijuana laws, which are considered among the most restrictive in the nation,” reports the news source.
Minnesota Public Radio (MPR) News reported in 2019 just how restrictive the program is. “More than four years in, the state’s program serves relatively few people and is considered to be too expensive by many patients,” says MPR news. “The exact form the program will take in the future is unclear, as some lawmakers push for Minnesota to join other states that allow the sale of recreational marijuana.”
While Minnesota and dozens of other states consider recreational use along with medicinal, up to 11 states in the U.S. legally allow both types in their regions, proving it not only helps patients, but it seriously boosts the economy.
Qualifying Conditions and Costs
Minnesota’s initial qualifying conditions for the state medical cannabis program included:
In August 2020, the state added age-related macular degeneration, after Minnesota Commissioner of Health Dr. Ed Ehlinger added autism spectrum disorders and obstructive sleep apnea to the list in 2017.
Along with having a qualifying condition, a Minnesota resident must prove their place of address with a valid state driver’s license or identification card. The cost for a Minnesota medical cannabis card is $200 annually. Patients who have SSI, SSD, or are enrolled in MinnesotaCare only pay $50 annually. The annual renewal fee for a medical cannabis card is $50.
Minnesota details a five-step process to become a caregiver, beginning with having the patient’s physician certify that they need assistance in the medical cannabis program. After approval by a physician, the caregiver fills out an online application, which includes a criminal background check that costs $15 and is payable by the caregiver. A certified caregiver for any patient must be at least 21 years of age and have a valid Minnesota driver’s license or state identification card.
Possession and Cultivation of Medical Marijuana in Minnesota
Minnesota has very strict possession and cultivation regulations, with only two in-state manufacturers producing all medical cannabis in Minnesota. Based on state law, “manufacturers are required to ensure that the medical cannabis distributed contains a maximum of a 30-day supply of the dosage determined for that patient.” Additionally, “pharmacists at registered Cannabis Patient Centers recommend specific dosage and type for patients.” Permissible forms of medical cannabis include but not limited to oil, pill, and any vaporized delivery method, which does not use raw plant or dry leaves.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, all applicants must provide a state-issued driver’s license or identification card to prove residency or they are not eligible for a card.
The first and most important step is to schedule a physician appointment with Veriheal. You can upload your medical records for evaluation by the physician. Following your appointment with the physician and if you are approved, he or she will recommend certification for medical marijuana.
From start to finish, the physician consultation usually takes 10-15 minutes.
Veriheal has a very high approval rate for medical cannabis licensure. However, if you are not approved, you will be refunded in full.
Minnesota considers chronic pain as a qualifying condition for medical cannabis.
The state of Minnesota requires that you buy any medical cannabis prescriptions from state approved dispensaries, which provide different types of medicine at different locations.