About Cannabis in Missouri
In 2018, 66% of Missourians voted to legalize medical marijuana; however, in August of 2020, the state still had not opened one medical dispensary for the nearly 60,000 qualified patients waiting to buy prescriptions for needed relief, reports The Joplin Globe.
“The number of Missourians granted medical marijuana patient cards has more than doubled from last year, but with ongoing delays because of factors such as COVID-19, many are left wondering when dispensaries will be open with products readily available,” according to the local Missouri news source.
Meanwhile, in January 2020, a letter from the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services stated that, “it is a difficult reality that there is no legal method of initially acquiring marijuana, unless that marijuana is somehow discovered in the wild.” The letter goes on to argue that medical marijuana cardholders have the right to possess marijuana.
Residents waited until the tale end of 2020 before medical cannabis hit the shelves for purchase by medical marijuana cardholders. As of now, patients actively have access to several dispensaries across the state.
Qualifying Conditions for Cannabis Patients in Missouri
Missouri began its medical marijuana program in 2018 with a lengthy list of qualifying conditions, unlike some states that start with a short list and add more conditions as time goes on. According to the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, qualifying patient conditions include:
- A terminal illness
- Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) or acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS)
- Intractable migraines unresponsive to other treatment
- A chronic medical condition that causes severe, persistent pain or persistent muscle spasms, including but not limited to those associated with:
- Debilitating psychiatric disorders, including, but not limited to:
- A chronic medical condition that is normally treated with prescription medications that could lead to physical or psychological dependence, when a physician determines that medical use of marijuana could be effective in treating that condition and would serve as a safer alternative to the prescription medication.
- In the professional judgment of a physician, any other chronic, debilitating or other medical condition, including, but not limited to:
Missouri Medical Marijuana Program Requirements and Cost
Along with having a qualifying condition, applicants must provide proof of residency in Missouri with a valid state driver’s license or ID card. In addition to Veriheal’s consultation fee of $199, the cost for a Missouri medical marijuana card application is $25.94, which must be renewed annually to stay valid in the statewide registry. Recommendations on medical marijuana doses must also be renewed annually.
Registering a Primary Caregiver in Missouri
To be a caregiver for a Missouri resident, both the caregiver and patient must be able to provide proof of residency with a valid driver’s license or ID card. The caregiver also needs to be added to the patient’s medical cannabis certification application as the listed primary caregiver in order to be authorized to purchase and possess medical marijuana on the patient’s behalf. The cost of a caregiver application is $25.94.
A patient may have up to two registered caregivers who are 21 or older and are residents of the state of Missouri. Caregivers are allowed to assist three patients at a time. Only legal guardians or parents may serve as a minor’s caregiver.
Either a patient or a caregiver (not both) may include an application for patient cultivation unless the patient is a minor. If they are, they cannot apply for cultivation. If patient cultivation is desired, it must be included in your initial application for a medical marijuana license.
Possession and Cultivation of Medical Marijuana in Missouri
State law limits the purchase of medical marijuana to 4 ounces every 30 days. That is unless you see two physicians, and they both fill out the Alternative Physician Certification Form that requests the same amount of marijuana for the same medical condition.
For an additional $103.73, cannabis patients and caregivers may apply for the patient cultivation identification card. Missouri law specifies that up to two individuals who have patient cultivation IDs may cultivate medical marijuana in one space. The two individuals may be two patients, two caregivers, or a patient and a caregiver. Up to 12 mature, flowering cannabis plants may be cultivated in this situation. Additionally, there may be up to 12 immature, non-flowering plants and 12 clones. If one of the individuals is a patient as well as a caregiver then the number of plants increases to an additional 6 mature plants, 6 non-flowering plants, and 6 clones.
It is important to note that any cultivation must take place in an enclosed, locked facility that may be a stationary closet, room, garage, greenhouse, or other comparable and fully enclosed spaces that only the patient/caregiver has access to. An outdoor enclosed facility must also be a stationary space that is enclosed on all sides except the base. It can be secured by a chainlink fence, wooden slats, or a similar material. The cannabis plants cannot be visible to the unaided eye if looking at it from an adjacent property. You may also grow your medication only in one location that is detailed on your application for the license with the state.
If you decide to move your plants to a new, enclosed, and locked location, you may do so, but you must update your application with the new location in detail immediately in order to stay in compliance.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, all applicants must provide a Missouri state-issued driver’s license or identification card to prove their place of residence. Otherwise, they are not eligible for a medical cannabis card.
The first and most important step is to schedule a physician appointment with Veriheal. You will need to upload your medical records. After the appointment and if you are approved, the physician will recommend certification for medical marijuana treatment.
The initial consultation with a licensed physician usually takes 10-15 minutes. It takes the Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) 30 days to review the license application. Then, you can print your card from the application portal.
If you’re not initially approved for a medical card, you may submit corrections within 10 days on the application portal. That being said, Veriheal has helped many patients in Missouri and has a very high approval rate for medical cannabis licensure; however, if you are not approved, you will be refunded in full.
Yes, Missouri considers severe, persistent pain as a qualifying condition for a MMJ card.
You may only legally purchase medical marijuana from a state-licensed facility. If you are a patient cultivator, you may also be able to purchase cannabis plant seeds from a licensed Seed to Sale Provider.
The Missouri constitution does not reference or prohibit firearms for people who are legally consuming cannabis, though it may be in violation of federal laws.
If you are a licensed medical cannabis patient cultivator, you may cultivate six plants in a secure and locked location that only you have access to.
Yes. Previous convictions do not disqualify you from the program. It is important to note that the state can revoke your license in the instances of certain types of criminal conduct.