Obtaining a doctor’s certification of your qualifying conditions is the first step in applying for medical cannabis. When you obtain this proof, you can apply for medical cannabis if you meet the criteria for medical conditions.
The certification must be obtained from a physician under whom you continue to receive care regularly. The Department may not currently license a physician to certify patients to use cannabis before the time of the consultation. Therefore it is possible that they have not yet been registered. If this is the case, the physician can refer the patient to another physician who holds a valid registration as a marijuana-certified doctor and is also qualified to treat the patient’s condition, which qualifies the patient for the use of marijuana.
To obtain a registry ID card, a patient must receive a signed confirmation from their doctor, followed by an application to get a registry ID card, which may be done online. The application fee is $50, which can be waived if you can explain that you are suffering from financial hardship as part of your application. A registry ID card must be carried at all times by any person in possession of cannabis while in possession of that cannabis.
As a patient in New York State, it may be possible for you to obtain physician certification if you are diagnosed with one of the following conditions:
- HIV infection or AIDS,
- amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS),
- Parkinson’s disease,
- multiple sclerosis,
- spinal cord injury with spasticity,
- inflammatory bowel disease,
- Huntington’s disease,
- post-traumatic stress disorder,
Pain interferes with health and functioning capability as an alternative to opioid use or substance abuse to reduce or eliminate pain.
One or more of the following associated or complicating conditions must also be present in addition to the severe debilitating or life-threatening condition: cachexia, chronic pain, nausea, seizures, severe or persistent muscle spasms, PTSD or opioid use disorder, as well as severe debilitating or life-threatening conditions.
Becoming a Patient as a Minor:
The application for the registry ID card must be submitted by a person who has the age of at least twenty-one (21) years or the age of majority on the date of application for the registry ID card if the applicant is under the age of eighteen (18) or is otherwise incapable of consenting to medical treatment.
Benefits of Being a Patient:
Suppose you are arrested for marijuana possession while carrying your registry ID on your person at the time of your arrest. In that case, you can mount an affirmative defense to the charges against you in court. As a medical cannabis patient, you will have legal protection from your employer retaliating against you because of your enrollment as a patient of medical cannabis.
Becoming a Caregiver:
Registration with the department is only possible after you have been designated as a caregiver by a patient who needs your services. Registering online for the patient is possible once you are in the system as a representative for the patient. The certified patient can designate up to two caregivers when they apply for a registry identification card to assist them in obtaining and administering medical marijuana. As a caregiver, the individual must fulfill the following requirements:
- Unless the Department of Public Health grants special permission, you must be at least 21 years of age;
- To qualify for membership, you must be a resident of the State of New York and possess a valid New York State-issued driver’s license or an identification card issued by the State of New York;
- You must be someone else other than the physician certifying the patent.
- Once the Department has approved the patient’s application for medical marijuana of Health, each caregiver must register with the Department to receive an ID card from the registry that will enable them to obtain medical marijuana on behalf of the patient once the application has been approved.
- Each caregiver will be required to pay the $50 application fee, just as the patient unless they can demonstrate financial hardship and the fee is waived.
The state of New York does not recognize a patient registration from outside of New York State.
As far as the state of New York is concerned, cannabis cultivation is not permitted at home.