How Do You Get Your Medical Card in Missouri?
It was one of the most exciting days yet for the Show-Me-State in 2018 when nearly 70% of Missourians said yes to Amendment 2! This effectively legalized medical marijuana, and less than a year later in the summer of 2019, Missouri’s Department of Health and Senior Services began issuing cannabis business licenses, as well as patient cards. The language in Missouri’s Amendment 2 is pretty reasonable and allows a lot of people to access the medicine they need. Missouri has already issued over 100,000 patient cards!
How to get medical marijuana in Missouri
The first step to getting your medical marijuana card is finding the right doctor. We recommend Dr. Lisa Roark. She is not only a medical marijuana patient herself, but an outstanding physician and the owner of The Dispensary located in Cassville.
Your doctor needs to be a board-certified physician licensed to practice medicine in the state of Missouri. They must be a physician, not a chiropractor, nurse, or other medical personnel. However, many medical practices and even some retail stores partner with qualified physicians and host them to issue patient cards at their location. You always need to verify who your appointment is with to ensure it’s legit; that’s a rule of thumb to follow whether you’re in Missouri or not.
Remember: medical marijuana-related expenses will not be covered under your health insurance unless your primary care physician recommends it to you at a regular visit. It costs $150, on average, to get a doctor’s recommendation for medicinal cannabis in Missouri if you don’t have a physician already.
Amendment 2 says patients should have sufficient documentation proving their need for a medical marijuana card, so it’s a good idea to gather your medical documents beforehand. If you are seeking a medical marijuana recommendation for a mental illness, you should have documentation from a psychiatrist explaining your treatment history.
How to apply for your medical marijuana card in Missouri
Once you have the doctor’s recommendation, usually sent as a PDF to your email, you’ll need to apply for a card on the Department of Health and Senior Service’s website. Most patients won’t need more than the allotted 4 oz per month, so use the Standard Physician Certification Form unless your doctor determines you need more, in which case you can use the similar Alternative Physician Certification Form allowing for a place to put your recommended amount.
Apply for your medical marijuana card on the Missouri DHSS website
The application costs $25 plus tax to complete and will require you to fill out basic information like your name and address. You’ll also need to take a picture of your driver’s license and submit an additional photo of yourself to verify your identity. Then, the state will approve or deny your application. Don’t be alarmed if you get denied, you will be told why and given a chance to fix it!
The majority of denials are for things like address misspellings, so don’t panic if you don’t get approved! Most people, however, are approved for a patient card on the first try if they do everything correctly. Keep in mind: you’ll need to renew your medical patient card annually, meaning you can expect to fork over the costs of a doctor’s recommendation and the state’s application fees next year, too. Many doctors offer discounts on patient renewal cards, and you might talk to your primary physician about recommending it to you at your next visit to avoid additional fees.
After you apply, you should hear approval from the Department in about a week. It’s important to note, you will not receive a physical patient card in the mail. You will have a digital copy only unless you print one out, and it’s up to you to have it accessible in case you’re pulled over. Some people print out their medical marijuana cards and laminate them to keep them safe. The highway patrol will be able to see you are part of the medical marijuana program upon putting your information in the database, so make sure you:
- Don’t smoke in public or in your vehicle
- Keep dispensary purchases in their original packaging on your drive home
- Products that aren’t in the original packaging should be well under your personal allotment if in your vehicle, and away from others
Ideally, you would drive to the dispensary and drive straight home to avoid issues with law enforcement. Public consumption is forbidden in Missouri, so it’s always a good idea to keep your medical cannabis at home.
Getting a cultivation card in Missouri
Missouri patients can get a cultivation card to grow cannabis at home, but only if they follow the right steps. Those who cultivate at home are called caregivers. Missourians apply to become caregivers and grow medicine for other people, including themselves. Caregivers might grow medicine for disabled people, those who don’t know how to grow themselves, low-income people, or folks who don’t live close to a dispensary.
It’s $100 to get a cannabis home cultivation license in Missouri, and you’ll have to renew this, too. You can apply for this at the same time as your patient card, but you will still have to pay both application fees. Here’s what to include in your application for a Missouri patient cultivation card:
- A detailed description of where you will be growing
- You must explain the location is locked and secure
- Emphasize the area will only be accessible to the patient growing the medicine
Can you get your medical marijuana card while on probation in Missouri?
Yes, thankfully, Missourians on probation aren’t barred from getting a medical marijuana card! Check out this answer on Missouri’s Department of Health and Senior Services FAQ page: “Previous convictions do not disqualify an individual from obtaining an identification card. However, a qualifying patient’s identification may be revoked for certain criminal conduct that occurs after the card is issued…”
In other words, past mistakes won’t prevent you from getting a patient card, even possession charges aren’t a disqualifier. But, if you mess up while you’re a patient, it might be a different story - so use good judgment, please!
Can you own a gun and have a medical card in Missouri in 2021?
This is where things begin to get a little tricky. Technically, you’re not supposed to because that interferes with the federal law’s guidelines for owning a gun. You can’t be under the influence of a controlled substance, which, unfortunately, the federal government still considers cannabis to be.
However, there is nothing in Amendment 2’s language that prevents it, so the Department of Health and Senior Services is basically staying out of it. “The Department of Health and Senior Services does not regulate the possession or purchase of firearms and therefore cannot say how the federal prohibition will be enforced within Missouri. Specific questions about these federal firearm restrictions should be directed to your attorney or the appropriate law enforcement agency,” reads another answer on the FAQ page.
Once you’re approved to be a medical marijuana patient, stop by The Farmer’s Wife, pick up your favorite product, and stay awhile!