From DC with Bud: Medical Marijuana Patients in the Nation’s Capitol
January 02, 2013
John Scott (Op-ed), San Francisco Chronicle
Recently the D.C. Department of Health (DCDOH) and Americans for Safe Access (ASA) hosted a Town Hall meeting to answer questions about the policies and procedures for future medical marijuana patients in the District of Columbia.
In order to qualify for the program, Title 22, Section C, Chapter 5 of the District of Columbia Municipal Regulations (DCMR) stipulates that patients must:
- “Be a bonafide resident of the District of Columbia…;”
- “Have a qualifying medical condition or be undergoing a qualifying medical treatment;”
- “Have a signed, written physician’s recommendation…;”
- “If the qualifying patient is a minor, the signed written consent of his or her parent or legal guardian.”
Qualifying medical conditions include HIV, AIDS, Glaucoma, Multiple Sclerosis and Cancer while qualifying medical treatments are limited to Chemotherapy, certain antiviral drugs, protease inhibitors, and radiotherapy. The current qualifying medical conditions and treatments are subject to change as determined by rule-making.
After qualifying, patients must purchase registration identification cards for a fee of $100. The cards are valid for one year and are only able to be used a one dispensary of the patient’s choice. Should the dispensary not carry the strain or paraphernalia that the patient requires and he or she wishes to purchase materials from another dispensary, the patient must surrender his or her current identification card, immediately notify his caregiver of the change, and then pay another $100 for a new identification card that reflects this change.
Oh yeah, and if you lose your card, that’s another $90 for the replacement fee…so don’t go medicating yourself and forget where you put your card.
Patients will be allowed to purchase up to 2 ounces of dried medical marijuana every 30 days, or the equivalent thereof when in any other form (such as edibles or extractions) and the administration of medical marijuana is only allowed at home, if permitted, or at a medical treatment facility.
The goal of all medical treatments is to help the patient recover or cope with whatever illness he or she suffers from. Should a patient of the D.C. program no longer need the program, the patient will be required to return any unused medical marijuana to the D.C. Metropolitan Police Department.
Both the DCDOH and ASA seem excited to implement the program and help suffering patients receive the treatment that they need to improve their quality of life. Involvement from the community is now what is needed to help mold the program into what is best for D.C. residents.
To learn more about the Medical Marijuana program in the District of Columbia, visit http://doh.dc.gov/node/157882