Becoming a Patient in Georgia

Summary

In April of 2015 Georgia House Bill 1, "Haleigh's Hope Act," became law. The law creates an exemption for the possession and use of some types of marijuana. Patients with severe forms of seizure disorders and seven other medical conditions are eligible for legal protections after the patient obtains a medical recommendation. The law also created a commission for the purpose of examining the law and making recommendations for changes to the Governor.

What's Legal

Qualifying patients are protected from arrest, and prosecution, for use and possession of up to 20 ounces of infused cannabis oils cannabis that contains no more than 5.0% tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and an amount of CBD equal to or greater than the amount of THC. The  law is substantively silent on cultivation and distribution of cannabis beyond patients and caregivers being required to register with the Department of Health.

Eligible conditions

Cancer, Crohn’s disease, Lou Gehrig’s disease, mitochondrial disease, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, seizure disorders and sickle cell disease

Application process

In June of 2015 Georgia began issuing “low THC oil” registry cards that patients and/or caregiver must obtain to comply with the law.  Low THC oil registry cards cost $25 and will be valid for two years from the date issued.

Doctor

Physicians must be licensed to practice medicine in the state of Georgia and have a genuine doctor-patient relationship with the qualified patient.

Access/Caregivers

Caretakers must obtain the medical marijuana I.D. card with the Georgia Department of health.  The law does not create a production or distribution system. Caregivers are defined as “the parent, guardian, or legal custodian of an individual who is less than 18 years of age or the legal guardian of an adult.”

Consumption

The law does not impose restrictions on where patients may use their medicine.

Age Limits

The are no age limits on patients.

Confidentiality

There are no explicit privacy protections currently in the law.

Housing

The law does not provide housing discrimination protection for patients.

Employment

The law does not provide employment discrimination protection for patients.

Insurance

Insurance companies are not required to pay for CBD oil therapy in Georgia.

Out of State patients

The law does not provide legal protections for out of state patients.

More information:

Department of Public Health registration page