Marijuana was banned in Alabama in 1931, and it remained banned until 2021. After numerous attempts to stop its legalization, medical marijuana is now legal in Alabama. However, its implementation will become effective beginning September 1, 2022.
If you are a patient in Alabama and you want to benefit from this program, you need to be conversant with how to get medical marijuana in Alabama. Keep on reading for more insights on applying for a medical marijuana card in Alabama.
How to Request a Medical Marijuana Card in Alabama
The first thing you need to know is that you can only apply for a medical marijuana card in Alabama if you are over 19 years. You must also be an Alabama resident. Minors can also benefit from the MMJ program, but a designated caregiver is required. Another necessity is that you need to be a patient suffering from any of the recognized medical conditions.
These medical conditions are known qualifying conditions because they allow you to qualify for the application for an MMJ card in Alabama. We are going to outline these medical conditions later.
At the point of writing this article, the information about the implementation of the MMJ program in Alabama was scanty. However, we can clearly state that all patients who want to benefit from the program will have to wait for the creation of the Alabama Medical Cannabis Patient Registry System. This is bound to take place in September 2022. If you plan to apply for the MMJ card in Alabama, you will have to wait until September 2022 to submit your application.
In the meantime, the best thing to understand is the process required of you to apply for an Alabama MMJ card. Let’s get straight into how to get medical marijuanas in Alabama:
1. Schedule a consultation with a state-licensed doctor
The first thing to do in Alabama when applying for a medical marijuana card is to look for a doctor who is willing to recommend you. This step is just like in any other state because it is necessary. Alabama only allows patients above 19 years to apply for a medical marijuana card, unlike other states, usually 18 years and above.
If you are of legal age, the first is to look for a licensed medical marijuana doctor and schedule an appointment. During the consultation, the doctor will ask you several questions regarding your medical condition and medical records. The aim of visiting a doctor is to prove that you are indeed suffering from a qualifying disease. Therefore, the doctor may need to carry out a few tests.
The doctor must also establish that all their other conventional treatment methods have proved futile. If the doctor can prove this, they will have no choice but to sign a recommendation form.
2. Apply to the Alabama Medical Cannabis Commission
After receiving the recommendation from the doctor, it will act as a green light for you to register with Alabama’s marijuana patient registry system. As a patient, you will know whether you are supposed to apply online or via postal mail address. If the application sails through, you will receive your Alabama medical marijuana within a few weeks. An MMJ card is quite helpful because it will help you to purchase medical marijuana in any dispensary legally.
3. Get Your Alabama MMJ Card and Begin Purchasing Medical Marijuana
The waiting period for patients to get their MMJ cards is not very clear. But we can speculate that it will be like most other states. It will probably take a few weeks for your application to undergo the required processing. In most cases, approved applications are sent to the patient via email, but the physical MMJ card will be sent to the owner via postal mail. We are also unsure if patients can receive a temporary digital card while waiting for the physical card.
How Much Does it Cost to Apply for a Medical Marijuana Card in Alabama?
We can speculate that the maximum application fee will be $65, since it is not clear how much it will cost cot patients to apply for an MMJ card in Alabama. The doctor’s recommendation charges may range from $150 to $300. How long the card will stay valid is also a subject for discussion. Most probably, it will be one year.
Which Medical Conditions are Considered Qualifying in Alabama?
When we started, we mentioned that a patient who wants to apply for an MMJ card must have one of the qualifying medical conditions. These are some of the qualifying medical conditions:
- Parkinson’s disease
- Autism spectrum disorder
- Crohn’s disease
- Spasticity related to spinal cord injury, ALS, or MS
- Sickle cell anemia
- Tourette’s syndrome
- Cancer-related symptoms such as vomiting, chronic pain, weight loss, or cachexia
- A terminal illness
- HIV/AIDS-related weight loss or nausea
- Conditions that cause seizures, such as epilepsy
- Extreme pain from medical conditions that are not treatable by conventional therapies treatments
There are many medical benefits that cannabis has to offer. However, this controversial drug falls under controlled substances. That is why rules and regulations are set to govern its use. Alabama is one of the many States in America that have legalized the use of medical marijuana. These are the steps required for patients in Alabama to receive MMJ cards. A patient needs to prove that they are suffering from any of the mentioned qualifying medical conditions. After that, you can apply for an MMJ card from the State Department of Health.