How do I get a medical marijuana card in New York?

Inside a medical marijuana dispensary

Getting your medical marijuana card in New York, so you can buy legal weed, is a straightforward process. The three steps begin by consulting with a qualified healthcare practitioner to see if you have an applicable health condition, picked from a long state-approved list, ranging from autism to rheumatoid arthritis, and many things in between.

You can see a doctor in person, but run the risk of finding a physician who hasn’t kept up with developments in the medical cannabis field, and so may not be able to give you the best advice. Many people are opting for a telehealth service like HelloMD’s, in which you can talk to a qualified practitioner online, who will answer your questions and help determine if medical marijuana is a good fit for your health condition.

The second step involves registering for your New York Medical Marijuana ID card online, having your Medical Marijuana Program Certification Form, proof of New York residency, and valid New York State-issued ID handy.

If the patient is under 18, a parent or legal guardian must also submit a government-issued ID and a copy of the patient’s birth certificate. You can also appoint a certified caregiver who can buy medical cannabis on your behalf, but they will also need to register separately.

Next, you can buy your medical cannabis from an approved list of dispensaries, either in person or online. If you go in person, be sure to bring your Medical Marijuana Certification Form and your Registry ID.

Certified medical patients are now potentially able to buy a 60-day supply of cannabis — up from 30-day supply before. How much you can exactly buy is determined by your medical practitioner.

Malu M.

A marijuana advocate in New York

A marijuana advocate featured in Forbes

If you are a recreational user in New York, don’t light up and celebrate yet. Yes, former Governor Mario Cuomo did pave the way to legalization, and in September 2021 current Governor Kathy Hochul kept true to her promise to expedite sales of legal marijuana in New York. She followed the protocol of nominating candidates for the top positions with the newly established Office of Cannabis Management (OCM), and Cannabis Control Board (CCB).

However, legal cannabis dispensaries may not open at all in 2022.

Every city, town, and village in New York State has had to decide whether they will allow marijuana dispensaries and consumption spots in their locales. While the Big Apple is prepared to embrace adult-use cannabis in a big way, many of the smaller municipalities have been hesitant to do the same, and many have said no outright.

Part of the hesitation has been some uncertainty in how legal cannabis sales would work with the recreational market. However, the medical marijuana market has been well established and accepted since 2016, with an expanding list of health conditions that can be treated with cannabis.

Indica strains are better for a good night's sleep.

Getting your New Your medical marijuana certification is a safe and easy process working through HelloMD. Since 2015, we have helped more than 100,000 patients connect with practitioners and get the sound advice they need — all online from the comfort and privacy of home.

You can quickly register online and speak to the practitioner from your residence through your computer, smartphone, or tablet. They’ll answer any of your questions and determine if medical cannabis is right for your condition. If it is, they can provide you with medical marijuana certification.

The HelloMD consult costs only $129, and there is a one-time $50 charge from the state of New York.

Ronald B.

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