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Recommending Cannabis in Connecticut
Medical professionals recommending medical cannabis must:
- an active Connecticut medical license issued by the Connecticut Department of Public Health
- practice within the State of Connecticut
- possess an active controlled substances registration issued by the Connecticut Department of Consumer Protection that is not subject to limitation
- create a DAS Business Network account to access online registrations
- possess an active Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) controlled substance registration that is not subject to limitation,
- must be registered with and able to access the Connecticut Prescription Monitoring Program.
Physicians must issue a written certification to a qualifying patient that authorizes the palliative use of marijuana by the qualifying patient. The Department of Consumer Protection prescribes the form of the certification. The certification must be signed and dated by the patient's physician, and it must state that in the physician's professional opinion, the qualifying patient has a debilitating medical condition and the potential benefits of the palliative use of marijuana outweigh the health risks. This written certification is valid for one year from the date it was signed and dated by the physician.
If the qualifying patient is less than 18 years old, a qualifying physician cannot issue a certification that requires the marijuana to be smoked, inhaled, or vaporized. The dosage must be low enough to allow for other forms of intake.
A physician is not subject to arrest or prosecution or penalized in any manner for providing a written certification for the palliative use of marijuana as long as the physician:
- Completed a medically reasonable assessment of the patient's medical history and current medical condition and the certification is based on this assessment;
- Diagnosed the patient as having a debilitating medical condition;
- Prescribed or determined it is not in the best interest to prescribe prescription drugs to address the symptoms or effects for which the certification is being issued;
- Concluded that in the physician's medical opinion, the potential benefits of the palliative use of marijuana would likely outweigh the health risks to the patient;
- Explained the potential risks and benefits of the palliative use of marijuana to the patient or where the patient lacks legal capacity, to the parent, guardian, or other person having legal custody of the patient;
- Has a bona fide relationship with the patient in order to register them with the program. (A bona fide physician-patient relationship means a relationship in which the physician has an ongoing responsibility for the assessment, care and treatment of a patient's debilitating medical condition or a symptom of the patient's debilitating medical condition);
- The physician has no financial interest in a dispensary or producer licensed under this act, and;
- The physician is reasonably available to provide follow-up care and treatment for the patient, including any examinations necessary to determine the efficacy of marijuana for treating the patient's debilitating medical condition, or a symptom thereof.