The Status of Marijuana Laws & Cannabis Legalization in VA
Until COVID-19, Virginia’s strictly limited cannabis program was one of the most restrictive in the U.S. Though the state decriminalized small amounts of cannabis before COVID-19, fining residents the lowest U.S. fine of $25, it still had a limited list of qualifying conditions. But that changed. Now that list can now be broadened based on a physician’s diagnosis and approval.
According to the bill, SB 1557, the medical cannabis program now “authorizes licensed physician assistants and licensed nurse practitioners to issue a written certification for use of cannabidiol oil and THC-A oil,” and “the bill requires the Board to promulgate regulations establishing dosage limitations, which shall require that each dispensed dose of cannabidiol oil or THC-A oil not exceed 10 milligrams of tetrahydrocannabinol.”
Virginia is allowing several forms of medical cannabis products to be purchased at statewide dispensaries such as oil, tinctures and edibles but not cannabis flower. However, even though the Old Dominion State expanded the program the Americans for Safe Access (ASA) gives the state an F. This Washington D.C.-based organization publishes an annual report card on state medical cannabis programs, and Virginia has maintained a failing grade since 2015. Moving forward, ASA has a list of suggested changes to turn the untimely and limited program into a progressive plan that will benefit all Virginia residents.
“As the state looks to 2021 ASA recommends that lawmakers focus efforts on authorizing legal retail sale of medical cannabis flower, and authorize registered patients to cultivate cannabis at home to reduce cost and travel burdens on patients,” reports ASA.
Until further changes, Virginia medical cannabis patients now register with the Board of Pharmacy after they are approved by a physician or approved medical assistant.
Virginia Medical Marijuana Card Qualifying Conditions
Since 2019, Virginia allows either a doctor or other specified medical assistant to diagnose and prescribe CBD and THC-infused oils. Now that the list has broadened, patients who suffer from several conditions relieved by medical cannabis can now seek the needed relief. Some of the most common conditions that medical cannabis patients seek mmj cards for include:
Along with having any diagnosable condition, a patient must also prove they are a resident of Virginia with a valid driver’s license or state identification card. The annual medical cannabis card registration fee is $50, which must be paid to the Virginia Board of Pharmacy upon physician approval.
Possession and Cultivation
The state allows up to 10mg of THC in a single dose, which can be taken as many times a day prescribed by a certified physician or medical assistant. Forms of allowable medical cannabis include capsules, sprays, tinctures, lozenges, creams, gels, patches, edibles, and inhalation devices. No smokeable flower is allowed. Home growing is not permitted at this time.
Registering as a Caregiver in VA
A Virginia caregiver must be designated by the state-registered patient as an assistant to be considered for approval. Once named, the caregiver must prove they are a resident of Virginia with a valid driver’s license or state identification card. Once approved, the caregiver will be allowed to purchase medicinal cannabis for the patient.
Accessing Medical Marijuana
Virginia, like many states, now has a formal program of medical marijuana cards. The certification process is overseen by the Virginia Department of Health Professions and the Pharmacy Board.
A registered patient can currently only access a 90-day supply of THC-A or CBD oil. Once certified, patients will have access from a pharmaceutical processor to their suggested dosage.
Frequently Asked Questions
The medical marijuana program is only available to Virginia residents. In applying for a medical marijuana card, one must provide the following: full name, date of birth, address, telephone number, and email address if any, a valid ID, and at least 18 years of age, else you will need to provide consent from a parent or guardian. And a statement that indicates your age and residency. Book your appointment with a doctor provided to you by Veriheal first to review your ailments and medical condition.
The medical evaluation usually takes 10-15 minutes. If you are not approved then your consultation is free. We entail a network of highly qualified medical practitioners who are willing to evaluate any patient to see if they qualify for medical cannabis. We have a 99% approval rate so if you are not approved, you are refunded in full.
No, you can not. You can only get approved for medical marijuana from a practitioner that has registered with the Virginia medical marijuana program. And for that, we provide you a physician so you do not need to go through your primary care physicians.
Any diagnosed condition or disease determined by the physician to benefit from the use of cannabis will qualify you for medical cannabis.
If you have medical records, be sure to provide them. If not, the physician will establish them with you.
The cost is $199 and that covers your medical evaluation, your consultation with a licensed VA practitioner registered with the state, and an authorized certification for medical marijuana purchases. For $379 you and a friend or family member can both get your cards for a nice little discount.
Dispensaries in Virginia have begun to open! Also, Washington, DC dispensaries now offer reciprocity to VA residents. We’ll do our best to continue to add new dispensaries here for you to view.