How to Get a Medical Marijuana Card at Arizona

How to Have a Medical Marijuana Card at Arizona

Obtaining a medical marijuana card in Arizona is easy in concept –consult with a physician, and if you qualify, receive a card. In practice it takes time, patience, determination, and a number of specific documents.

The Arizona Department of Public Health (ADHS) only accepts online medical marijuana applications; there is no method to apply in person or through the mail. The agency also requires all documents to be filed in PDF format.

Using the health department’s Patient Checklist will save you a lot of hassle and time.

So if you’re not good with computers, or don’t have internet access, you’ll want to find a friend or relative who’s. Librarians at most public libraries are often quite helpful and can usually get you to the ADHS Medical Marijuana home page on a computer. Staff members at Arizona’s many medical marijuana-focused clinics can also help you through the procedure.

The current list of qualifying conditions is contained on the Arizona Department of Health Services’ medical marijuana home page, together with a helpful FAQ. ADHS also includes a handy Patient Checklist that’s worth printing out and working through–it’ll save you a lot of hassle and time.

Here’s how to get started.

Can you qualify for medical marijuana in Arizona?



Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS)

Hepatitis C

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)

A chronic or debilitating disease or medical condition or the treatment for a chronic or debilitating disease or medical condition that causes:

If you believe you qualify under one of these conditions, your next step would be to…

Consult with a doctor

Allopathic (MD), Osteopathic (DO), Homeopathic [MD(H) or DO(H)], and Naturopathic [NMD or ND] doctors who have a physician-patient relationship with the patient may write certifications for medical marijuana.

You’ll need current (within the past calendar year) medical records documenting your investigation with one of the aforementioned conditions.

If you haven’t yet been diagnosed with a qualifying condition, you will need to make an appointment with a licensed doctor to officially obtain the diagnosis.

Not all physicians are comfortable handling medical marijuana patients. In actuality, many family doctors are uncomfortable even discussing the alternative. Don’t let this dissuade you.

Try your family doctor first, but if they are unreceptive, seek out the care of a doctor experienced and comfortable with medical cannabis.

Leafly asserts an updated list of healthcare professionals that are experienced with medical cannabis conditions and recommendations. You can find that list here.

Do I have to get diagnosed all over again with a new physician?

No. There’s a technical passage in the Arizona law that actually makes sense, and functions for patients.

This is from the Arizona Department of Health Services web site: “The medical marijuana certificate given to a qualifying patient doesn’t have to come from the doctor diagnosing the qualifying patient’s debilitating illness. ”

The certificate can come from another doctor whom the patient has consulted about the use of medical marijuana. If that second doctor can confirm the patient’s condition (usually by consulting the patient’s medical records, which might contain written evidence of this condition), and believes the patient is very likely to receive therapy or comfort through the use of medical marijuana, the second doctor may give the certificate.

About these medical records

The majority of us don’t walk around carrying our medical records. If your physician is uncomfortable with medical cannabis and you want to consult a second caregiver, you might want to grant that second caregiver access to your medical records.

For some people, this can get tricky, because the old stigmas about cannabis get involved. Some patients may be reluctant to have a medical cannabis-focused clinic request records from their private doctor because it alerts the family physician and may be regarded as a rejection of that doctor’s advice or care.

Here’s a tip: Request a complete copy of your health records now, prior to initiating a conversation with your family doctor about the possibility of medical cannabis. Tell them it’s to get a family history project. Whatever. They’re your records and you have a legal right to them based on the national HIPPAA law. In actuality, the health clinic must by law deliver those records to you within 30 days of your request.

How do I get a card?

Once you have your medical records in hand, you’ll need the following to file your medical marijuana card application with the assistance of your doctor:

Note: You will need an electronic copy of the, ie, have a digital photograph of the front and back of the ID. This is required to cover the Arizona Department of Health State’s $150 application fee.

  • A digital photograph of the patient. Notice the specs here: ADHS especially requires a photograph taken within the previous 60 days; it must be 2 inches by 2 inches in size, or minimum 600×600 pixels, maximum 1200×1200 pixels; it must be in “passport photo” fashion, face-fronting with no hats or headgear, with a plain white background.
  • What if the patient is under 18?

    There are special rules and regulations for patients that are minors. Consult ADHS’s page dedicated to patients under 18, available here.

    What if the patient has a criminal record?

    There are no criminal background checks or prohibitions for medical marijuana patients in Arizona. Background checks are only required for designated health professionals and dispensary agents.

    What are the costs?

    The standard application fee is $150. Your SNAP Card must have your first name on the front. If it doesn’t, the state will need to see your SNAP approval letter from D.E.S. (the state Department of Economic Security).

    Fees for processing the application will vary by doctor. Typically they range between $150 and $300. Some suppliers offer discounts for military veterans, in addition to home visits for patients who cannot make it to an outside office.

    How long will it take to receive my card?

    Once the Arizona Department of Health receives the application from your doctor, processing time can take no more than 3-5 business days or as much as two weeks. Initial notification is sent to the patient via email. Once your application has been accepted by the Arizona Department of Health, your medical marijuana card should arrive in your mailing address within 3-10 business days.

    Yes. The registry identification card expires one year after it was issued. The renewal process should be started at least 30 days prior to the expiry date, and these forms and instructions can be found on the ADHS site here. The renewal fee is $150.

    If I reside in another state and visit Arizona frequently, can I get an Arizona card?

    If you can provide some proof of Arizona residency, and meet all the above conditions, you may be entitled to an Arizona card. Patients with medical marijuana cards from other states may legally possess and use cannabis for medical purposes while in Arizona. But they might not obtain medical cannabis from a dispensary, because all Arizona dispensaries must confirm that a patient is registered in the ADHS system before dispensing cannabis.

    Published at Thu, 05 Jul 2018 20:16:08 +0000

    Posted in: News

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