Making It A Happy Thanksgiving: How To Cook A Cannabis Thanksgiving Dinner

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone out there.  I hope that everyone is able to be with their family during this holiday season.  I also hope that those that are suffering from a number of different illness also find peace and some relief.  Below you will find a video on how to make cannabutter.  Once you have made that you can turn any recipe into a cannabis infused dish!  Please share these recipes and bring joy to others ~ Cherry Girl

Cannabutter (can be used in any recipe)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M90mAWrI_58
http://www.420magazine.com/forums/420-kitchen/37701-cannabutter-7-easy-steps.html

CannaCandied Yams

Yields about 8 servings.

Ingredients:

* ¼ cup canabutter
* ½ cup light brown sugar
* ¼ cup chopped pecans
* 1 large (40-ounce) cans large yams or sweet potatoes, drained
* 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
* 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
* Mini marshmallows for topping

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F
2. In a saucepan, melt pot butter over medium heat. Add brown sugar and pecans, simmering for a few minutes
3. In a large bowl, mash yams with a potato masher until you reach desired consistency.
4. Add sugar/pecan mixture, cinnamon and nutmeg, and mix thoroughly.
5. Transfer yam mixture to a metal pie pan and cover with marshmallows.
6. Bake for 15-20 minutes at 325 degrees F.
7. Remove from the oven and place under the broiler until the marshmallows are lightly browned.

Greenbud Green Bean Casserole

Cooking time 30 mins, Serves 10 – 12

Ingredients:

• 2 cans Condensed Cream of Mushroom Soup
• 1 cup milk (fat free or 2%)
• One onion finely diced
• 2 tablespoons of Cannabutter
• ¼ teaspoon of salt
• 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
• 8 cups cooked cut green beans
• 1 cup of French Fried Onions

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
2. In a large skillet sauté the chopped onion in a little cannabutter over medium heat for a few minutes until cooked.
3. Stir in the canned mushroom soup, milk, salt and pepper, green beans and 1 table spoon of cannabutter and mix well until its all warmed through.
4. Using the left over cannabutter grease the casserole dish.
5. Transfer to the casserole dish, sprinkle with French Fried Onions and bake for 15 mins or until hot and bubbling.

 Cannabis Pumpkin Pie

Ingredients:

* 1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
* 2 cups canned pumpkin, mashed
* 1 cup sugar
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 2 eggs, slightly beaten
* 1 cup half-and-half
* 1/3 cup marijuana butter, melted
* 1 tsp vanilla extract
* 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
* 1/4 tsp ground ginger
* 1/4 tsp nutmeg
* 1 (9-inch) unbaked pastry shell
* Whipped cannabis cream, for topping

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
2. In a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese with a hand mixer. Add the pumpkin and beat until combined.
3. Add the sugar and salt, and beat until combined.
4. Add the eggs, half-and-half, and melted cannabis butter, and beat until combined.
5. Add the vanilla, cinnamon, and ginger, and beat until combined.
6. Pour the filling into the pie crust and bake for 45-50 minutes, or until the center is set.
7. Allow pie to cool to room temperature and top each slice with a generous amount of cannabis whipped cream before serving.

Mary Jane’s Turkey

1 medium-sized (12- to 15-pound) turkey

*1/2 cup marijuana butter

¼ cup chicken broth

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 teaspoon poultry seasoning

1 teaspoon sweet basil

1 teaspoon thyme leaves

1/2 teaspoon sage

Melt butter in a small saucepan over low heat and blend in remaining ingredients. Stuff turkey or season with salt and pepper, if desired. Make a small incision in skin of turkey, force a finger through the slit and break the contact between the skin and the meat. Using a meat injector, squirt half the butter mixture under the skin. Cook the turkey according to your favorite method, basting with the remaining butter mixture every half hour until done.

Ganja Gravy

Ingredients:

* Turkey, chicken or vegetable stock
* 6 Tbsp cannabutter
* 2 large onions, sliced thin
* 2 Tbsp chopped fresh rosemary
* 2 Tbsp chopped fresh sage
* 1/3 cup flour
* 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
* Salt and pepper to taste
* ½ cup balsamic vinegar

Directions:

1. In a large skillet, melt canabutter over medium-high heat
2. Add sliced onions and sauté 10 minutes
3. Add rosemary and sage and sauté for 10 minutes
4. Add flour and whisk for 1 minute
5. Gradually whisk in stock and boil until gravy thickens, stirring frequently
6. In the pan that you baked the turkey in, pour the juices from pan into a large cup or bowl and spoon off fat. Add juices to the gravy.
7. Add vinegar to roasting pan. Bring vinegar to simmer over medium heat, scraping up browned bits. Pour mixture into heavy small saucepan.
8. Boil for about 3 minutes and add to gravy.
9. Season with salt and pepper.
10. Optional: If you are not cooking the turkey or are using the juices for a non-medicinal gravy, simply add the vinegar to the gravy and simmer for 10-15 minutes.

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Breaking News

The FDA revoked approval of the use of a popular breast cancer drug Avastin.  It was found that Avastin exposed users to potentially harmful side effects such as severe high blood pressure and hemorrhaging.  Even with this news Avastin will remain on the market where Doctors can still prescribe it to breast cancer patients but with the revoking of FDA approval it will likely cost breast cancer patients $88,000 a year which would be too costly for most.
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/19/business/fda-revokes-approval-of-avastin-as-breast-cancer-drug.html?_r=1

Shocking news that scientists have caught up with the public they have found merit to medical marijuana.   The Institute of Medicine has published a study stating that they found merit to cannabis.  Just had to share please pass along.  The study is from 1999 so it is curious why the government still claims no medicinal value to cannabis.
IOM finds scientific merit to medical marijuana. Institute of Medicine

Take Ownership of Your Body and Your Illness

On Oct 31st it was estimated that the 7 billionth person was born.  In the US the population is around 311 million and the number of doctors is about 661,400.  With that ratio it is not realistic for us to expect our doctor to be an expert on each one of us.  Therefore it is important for us to take ownership of our health and sometimes our illnesses as well.

Our body is something that we should be an expert on.  We should be informed of our illnesses so that we can make informed decisions with our doctors.  We should also be aware of all options for treatments as well.

One controversial treatment is cannabis.  The human body has an Endocannabinoid system that interacts with Cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant.  Cannabinoids have been found in numerous studies to help alleviate symptoms caused by illness or cure them completely. Despite this the US Federal government still denies any medicinal value.

There are several states that have enacted medical marijuana laws that were backed by the people.  California is one of them.  In California you can discuss cannabis as a treatment option with your doctor.  They in turn can write you a recommendation for cannabis which you can then grow or buy at a dispensary.  In any state you can inform your doctor that you are treating your illness with cannabis and have them document your progress. Be sure to weigh the options if your state does not offer protections.

This natural plant has been found to be of use in many ways including being a possible cure for cancer.  With cannabis proving time and again how beneficial it can be it is only a matter of time before America demands a stop to the prohibition of this miracle plant.  This natural medical miracle needs to be free for all people to use not locked into the pharmacutical bureaucratic mess.

My hope with this blog is to bring attention to all the benefits of cannabis.  I hope to show people how cannabis can relate to their disease or life in general.  I believe with education people will start to see the lies and corruption that surround this plant.  Please share the truth about cannabis and feel free to use this information in your fight against cannabis prohibition ~Cherry Girl

Integrative Medicine: Legalization and regulation of cannabis

Awesome article I found out of the Seattle Times talking about the history of cannabis prohibition.

Integrative Medicine: Legalization and regulation of cannabis
By Drs. Kay Judge and Maxine Barish-Wreden
McClatchy Newspapers

The California Medical Association made news when it became the first state medical association to recommend the legalization and regulation of cannabis, better known as marijuana.

The CMA’s Council on Scientific and Clinical Affairs noted in its recommendations that there is an increasing body of evidence that marijuana may be useful in the treatment of a number of medical conditions, but research to determine both risks and benefits is hampered in the United States because marijuana still is classified as an illegal drug.

The CMA council believes that the legalization and regulation of marijuana will allow for broader research and objective data on the potential benefits and risks of marijuana. It also will help to regulate dispensaries of marijuana, regulate the physicians who prescribe marijuana, ensure that safe and consistent products are available to patients, reduce diversion and improper use of medical cannabis, and support the physicians who wish to appropriately prescribe medical marijuana to patients who are most likely to benefit from its use.

To give you some perspective on the current controversy around marijuana, here’s a little background.

Marijuana is classified under the Controlled Substances Act of 1970 as a Schedule 1 drug, meaning that it has a high potential for abuse and has no accepted medical benefit. However, marijuana, like other herbal remedies, has been used as a medicinal agent for thousands of years in many parts of the world. The Irish physician and pharmacologist Dr. William O’Shaughnessy, who had spent years studying its medical benefits in India, first introduced marijuana into Western medicine in 1841; it was used to relieve pain, muscle spasm and convulsions.

In the 1930s, marijuana came under fire in the United States as a harmful drug, and despite a lack of good data about its potential risk, it was removed from the U.S. Pharmacopeia in 1942.

In 1970, Congress initiated the Controlled Substances Act, which then awarded marijuana its Schedule 1 status, effectively shutting the door on further research. Shortly thereafter, Congress authorized the creation of the National Commission on Marijuana and Drug Abuse to study the risk of marijuana use. The commission’s report to Congress in 1972 was titled “Marijuana, A Signal of Misunderstanding.”

The physicians and other members of the commission concluded that there was “little proven danger of physical or psychological harm from the experimental or intermittent use of the natural preparations of cannabis,” and that “the actual and potential harm of use of the drug is not great enough to justify intrusion by the criminal law into private behavior.”

They also recommended the decriminalization of simple possession of marijuana. That recommendation was ignored by the Nixon administration, and marijuana remained classified as a Schedule 1 dangerous drug, unsuitable for any medical use (and this remains puzzling to many health care providers who work in the field of substance abuse, considering that alcohol and nicotine are both considered significantly more addictive and physically harmful than marijuana).

The controversy continued, and in 1996, 14 states including California legalized the use of marijuana for medical purposes.

In 1999, the California Legislature approved funding for cannabis research, leading to the formation of the University of California Center for Medicinal Cannabis Research, based at the University of California-San Diego.

The beginning results of that research were published last year and were promising: Cannabis was found to significantly reduce neuropathic pain as well as muscle spasm and muscle spasticity, particularly in patients with multiple sclerosis.

One of the studies showed that marijuana significantly reduced HIV-related pain in more than more than 50 percent of patients. In other research endeavors, cannabis also has been shown to reduce pain and neuropathy in cancer patients and in patients with neurological diseases. It also helps to reduce nausea and vomiting from chemotherapy, and it may help reduce the loss of appetite that can accompany cancer and HIV disease. Cannabis may also help augment the pain-relieving properties of narcotic drugs.

Even more intriguing, some data also suggest that cannabis may play a role in cancer risk reduction.

Rodent studies have shown that THC, one of the active ingredients in marijuana, not only reduces the risk of cancer in animals but also increases survival.

In a study of more than 64,000 Kaiser patients who were followed for about nine years, men who smoked marijuana had the lowest rates of lung cancer, even lower than the nonsmokers. A large case-control study done in Los Angeles also suggested a reduced risk of all cancers studied except for oral cancer in users of marijuana. There is biological plausibility for this: studies show that THC and other phytochemicals in marijuana inhibit the growth and spread of cancer cells in cell cultures and in rodents.

The public opinion on the legalization of marijuana has been heated and divided for many years; perhaps it’s time for more objective data on the potential risks and benefits of marijuana so that we can make informed decisions about its use.

The changes advocated by the California Medical Association can help pave the way for this.
http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/health/2016662291_integrate04.html?syndication=rss

Now Is the Time To Act! Medical Marijuana On the Defense

With all the protests and grumbling from the every day American I know that we are at a pivotal point in history that we are at a point where they could go either way.  I believe we are at that point with Medical Marijuana.  It has been state legal in CA since 1996 but only in the past few years has it really exploded.  A quick search on weedmaps or any other like website and you will see thousands of dispensaries dotted all over California.  While for cannabis consumers its a dream come true for officials its a nightmare.

With their experience only while the black market still exists, law enforcement and like minded people’s point of view on the violence and corruption that seems to follow I can see how they can be fearful of the whole industry. But just like with like with prohibition, not all of us are Al Capone.  There will always be criminals but it is wrong to punish us all for a few and in turn create more criminals.

Cannabis patients truly are an oppressed people.  The government has sought after marijuana with the same vivaciousness of a murderer manhunt. It has been unrelenting in its pursuit of even simple possession.  They wasted billions of hard earned taxpayer’s money at the drop of a hat over a simple plant.

There are hundreds of other top priority issues that are being negleted to go after this plant and its consumers.  It makes me angry to see stories where domestic violence is decriminalized because they ran out of money to prosecute but they have plenty of money to go after medical marijuana patients.

Thankfully the Alcohol Prohibition Era lasted a relatively short time but it still gives us a great look into a failed policy that applies to us today.  We saw how crime and general chaos ensued after prohibition took place.  We also saw crime organized for the first time on a larger scale.  Mass murders took place with bodies being dumped in the streets.  Even with the it being illegal people still drank.

We are at a time in history with some of the same things taking place.  We have dispensaries and patients being robbed.  We have gang violence still trying to control whats left of the black market.  We have Mexican cartels taking over our forests and killing thousands in their country.  We have decapitated heads being found on children’s school playgrounds.

The underground black market for Marijuana is organized.  It has its roots deep throughout the country.  Here in California especially it has spilled out into almost every county.  The gang violence can be seen in the streets as well as the size of the prison population.  It has been a very lucrative business for them.  The sad thing is that some marijuana patients are forced to fuel this economy.

With regulation and legislation passed we have seen the legal medical marijuana population rise to the top and be on display for the world to see.  They have shown how dispensaries can be run responsibly and in the compassionate manner originally intended.  We have seen the standards of cannabis rise not only with potency but in growing and quality.

We have heard thousands of success stories from patients living a better life thanks to cannabis.  When pulled into the light and operated legally we see a change.  I have visited locations that are similar to a doctor’s office with a staff that are professional and knowledgeable.  They pay taxes, bring revenue into the county and provide jobs.

In Colorado, where the medical marijuana industry is for-profit, we have seen the amount collected in business licenses and the like in the millions.  We see how even in a bad economy that is one industry that is booming.  It is exploding right in the face of the federal government and they’re not happy about it.

Today we saw a crack down in California from the federal government.  They put it under the guise of criminal activity but in their eyes all of it is illegal.  The Attorney General’s office sent out letters to property owners bullying them by saying they would lose their property if they continued to allow a dispensary to operate.  By doing this they are strong arming the entire industry.

Not everyone can grow their own medicine but they still need it.  Even when the government says they are not going after the sick, by attacking the source of our medicine, they are attacking patients.  Once again they are reacting towards everyone instead of the problem.  Somehow they still do not seem to get that while a black market exists, while the unsuccessful and costly drug war exists, while prohibition exists we will always have these issues.

If it was not illegal you would not have mass amounts of undocumented marijuana transferred between states but instead a regulated system that would generate billions if not trillions in revenue.  The Mexican cartels, US gangs and the black market would not have the funding nor the power it currently does.

Instead license fees, taxes and other revenue would be pumped into the local, state and federal governments.  Patients would have access to quality medicine without fear.  With a law enforcement that back the marijuana industry and instead targets only true criminal activity I believe we would see an industry much like alcohol or tobacco.

With over 70 years of failed policy and crime stats supporting the evidence its time to repeal the prohibition of marijuana is it not time to act?  One can not be heard but many they will take notice.  How much longer can we stand by while the government attacks patients?

Even if you can’t actively participate educating and informing people of the benefits of cannabis is one way to be active.  There are hundreds of medical studies, thousands of survivor stories and millions of consumers.  There is mounting evidence of the powers of cannabis.  It is time for us to educate the government and others so that all can be free to medicate.

If you can be active get involved and contact your representitive and the presidential hotline.  Supporters are urged to call on the President to respect state marijuana laws – White House Hotline:202 -456-1111  show your support for a bill to let states regulate medical marijuana legally, H.R. 2306, has been introduced by Rep. Barney Frank and has several co-sponsors from California.

And in the great words of Thomas Jefferson:
When, in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth the separate and equal station to which the laws of nature and of nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation. We hold these truths to be self-evident; that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness; that to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed; that whenever any form of government becomes destructive to these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness.

What country can preserve its liberties if its rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance?-Thomas Jefferson

POT-TAX

Upcoming Event: Boston Freedom Rally

History of the Boston Freedom Rally

The Boston Freedom Rally is an annual event in Boston, Massachusetts. Held on the third Saturday in September, it is traditionally the second largest annual gathering demanding marijuana law reform in the United States, after the Seattle Hempfest. It is organized by the Massachusetts Cannabis Reform Coalition (MASS CANN), the Massachusetts state affiliate of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws also known as MASS CANN/NORML.

The first Freedom Rally was held in 1989 in North Adams, Massachusetts. The second was on the dock beside the USS Constitution in 1990. The third was held in front of the Massachusetts State House on Beacon Street and the fourth, in 1992, was held on Boston Common at the Parkman Bandstand. In 1995 the Freedom Rally moved to its current location across the Common on the Carty Parade Field.  To find out more check out their site www.bostonfreedomrally.com 

Medical Marijuana Strain and Effects Chart

Strain Type Medical Effects Medical Condition
Strong Indica Pain relief,  relief from insomnia, calming, appetite,  anti-anxiety Cancer, Aids, high anxiety, panic attacks, pain, fibromyalgia
Indica Relaxing, moderate pain relief, soothes anxiety symptoms Mild anxiety, stomach ailments, insomnia, appetite
Indica Dominant Some pain relief, mildly awake, moderate anti-anxiety Mild pain, slight insomnia, anxiety
Sativa Dominant Mildly uplifting, moderately relaxing, migraine relief Some depression, stomach ailments, MS symptoms, appetite
Sativa Awake, busy, mind clearing, happy, upbeat Mild depression, stomach ailments, mild MS, appetite
Strong Sativa Uplifting, motivating, brainy, euphoric,  anti-depressant Chronic migraines, depression, multiple sclerosis
CBD is a known active ingredient in marijuana.  It is known to have pain relief effects without the psychoactive properties of THC.  Meaning that you can get the pain relief you’re looking for without the high feeling.

Cooking with Cannabis

Image

Most people have heard of pot brownies.  They are often talked about in movies, songs and TV.  Cooking with cannabis today extends beyond brownies although you can still make a mean batch!  There are hundreds of recipes and techniques for cooking with cannabis.  Whether you have a sweet tooth or are hungry for dinner you will be sure to find a recipe.

Using edibles as a way to ingest medical marijuana is a healthy alternative to smoking.  Many find that their medical condition or personal preference works better with eating cannabis.  Today there are many options when looking to cook edibles.  You can use different parts of the plant and in different ways depending on the use.

Popular ways are making butter, infused oils, honey, hash oil, and infused alcohol.  With a quick Google search you can find hundred of ways to cook with cannabis.  Butter or cannabutter is a very popular method because of the versatility.   It allows you to use it in your favorite recipes as you normally would.  Letting you enjoy each bite while you medicate.

Some can find it daunting when first cooking with cannabis but you will soon learn that it will become second nature.  Who knows you could have a secret talent for it.  Get in the kitchen and find out!

Cannabutter  

The basic ratio is ~20 grams of butter per every gram of cannabis. The awesome bonus of cannabutter is you can use schwag, stems and shake (leaves) you’d normally discard for this recipe.

  1. Grind up your cannabis until it is very, very fine – far finer than if your were going to smoke it. You want to turn it into a fine powder, and an electric or manual coffee grider could work. Your best bet would be a cannabis grinder.
  2. Heat the water over a low to medium heat in a pan or double boiler. Add butter. Once the butter has completely melted, add the cannabis powder, stir well and turn heat down to low.
  3. Stir constantly and be sure the butter does not burn!
  4. Cook on low heat. The marijuana cookbook recommends cooking over a low heat for two to three hours. Do not overcook the THC will degrade and your butter will be bitter.  Be sure to stir periodically and keep an eye on it!
  5. When your mixture has cooked sufficiently, carefully strain the mixture with cheese cloth into a container appropriate for cooling and storage. Seal up the container and put in the refrigerator.
  6. As the mixture cools, a layer of butter will begin to solidify above the water. Remove the butter, throw out the water, and your butter is ready to use!
  7. Now you can use your thc butter in any baking recipe that requires butter.

Did you know you can Flavor your cannabutter?

Cannabutter can be enhanced with sweets, fruits, spices, savory, herbs and exotic flavors. Sweet cannabutter ingredients include brown sugar, stevia, chocolate or cocoa, crushed candy, and minced candied fruit. Fruity cannabutter ingredients are lemons, oranges, apple and coconut. Spicy marijuana butter additives come from whole hot peppers, hot sauce, Chinese 5 spice, or Jamaican jerk spice. The savory marijuana butter favorite flavor is garlic, making a very versatile condiment. Herb cannabutter best flavors with oregano, basil, thyme and rosemary. Exotic marijuana butter loves lemon grass. Simply experiment to find your favorite intensities. The fun part is many other cannabutter flavors to discover.

Cannabrownies

Ingredients

  1. 1/4 cup THC butter with 1/4 cup regular butter
  2. 1 cup chocolate chips
  3. 1 cup sugar2 eggs
  4. 3/4 cup self-rising flour
  5. 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  6. 3/4 cup chopped pecans

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350° Fahrenheit. Grease a 9 inch square baking pan.
  2. Melt THC butter, regular butter and chocolate chips in a large sauce pan or double boiler over low heat.
  3. When melted, remove from heat and stir in remaining ingredients in order listed, mixing well.
  4. Pour into pan and bake for 25-30 minutes. Let cool, cut into squares and enjoy!

Things to remember when eating Cannabis:

It usually takes longer for relief when eating cannabis compared to other methods of intake. It may also take longer for you to learn what dose is appropriate for you when eating and the side effects of using cannabis may be stronger = than those felt by smoking. You cannot overdose on cannabis, however side effects can be intense and overwhelming. Use caution when trying edible products especially if you did not make them. Try small doses at first and give yourself a few days to figure out the correct titration.

Ever Wonder If Your Illness Could Be Treated With Cannabis?

When I was first introduced to cannabis it was in a party setting.  I just knew that if I smoked it I would feel good.  The only way to get it was by calling up a guy who would bring you a plastic bag of green stuff.  There was no talk of what strain, how it was grown or where it came from.  Each week would be a surprise as to what you were going to get.  Sometimes it would make you sleepy, sometimes it would make you giggle till your sides hurt.

After dealing with debilitating headaches for a few years I decided to try cannabis as a treatment option.  I had a Dr. that was prescribing me medication after medication that would cause side effects like making my brain feel like it was on fire.  I was getting frustrated with reading all the side effects or worse feeling them.  I finally drew the line after they suggested that I try injections at the base of my head.  I knew I needed to find a safer, natural remedy.

Once I started doing research I learned that cannabis wasn’t green stuff in a bag but a natural wonder plant.  Not only was there more than one type but hundreds each with its own miracle properties.  Its not only the strain but the location of where or even how its grown that determines its usefulness.  When determining which strain is right for you there are some things to keep in mind.

There are two main categories that cannabis fall into although there are more.  Indica strains typically are the strains that will give you that drowsy body stoned feeling.  By contrast a sativa strain typically is a cerberal or head high.  Hybrids are quite common and depending on the percentage of indica to sativa can make a nice combination high.

There are strains that help with a variety of illnesses.  There are even studies that are suggesting that cannabis can reduce or shrink cancer cells.  Cancer patients find comfort from strains that aid with nausea and appetite while chronic pain sufferers find solace in it’s pain relief properties.

Cannabis needs to be grown properly and preferably by a quality grower who puts attention to detail as a priority.  One thing that should be on your mind when choosing cannabis is that you will be ingesting this product so why not know more about it?  Fertilizers and other chemicals being used during the growing process can effect the end product.  Even things like proper drying and handling can change how effective your medicine is.

One of the best ways to ensure that you are getting quality product is to grow it yourself.  There are plenty of books and online help to assist in growing your own medicine.  If growing is not an option the next best thing is buying your medicine through a dispensary or collective.  There you will have the option of choosing quality medicine that is safer.  If your state offers a medical marijuana program it is definitely worth the time to research and see if its an option for you.  So before passing off the option of using cannabis as a natural option do a little research and see that there is more to it than some green stuff in a bag.

We have selfless people who are willing to put in the time to compile a list of illness and their known treatments with cannabis as well as studies to back it up.  This is just a guide and as with anything you should seek professional opinions first.

Click Below to download PDF list
Granny Storm Crow’s MMJ Reference List- July 2011

How To Use Cannabis

Smoking
Smoking cannabis produces the most immediate relief ,and permits the most refined control of your dosage. While smoking any material is not good for the lungs, the amount of cannabis you need to smoke is so small you should not be overly concerned. Furthermore, using water pipes or other means of filtration will reduce the amount of unwanted plant matter you may inhale. It is better to smoke the flowers rather than the leaves as this also reduces the amount you will need to smoke.

Vaporizing
Cannabis vaporizers are designed to let users inhale active cannabinoids while avoiding smoke. Vaporizers work by heating the cannabis just below the point of combustion, the point at which smoke is produced. When the cannabis is properly heated, THC and other cannabinoids are emitted in the form of a vapor. Many patients who find smoked cannabis highly irritating report effective relief inhaling through vaporizers. Also, vaporizers are very efficient so they can save money in the long term.

Eating
Cannabis can be eaten, usually in the form of baked goods like cookies or in candy-like products. It usually takes longer for relief when eating cannabis compared to other methods of intake. It may also take longer for you to learn what dose is appropriate for you when eating and the side effects of using cannabis may be stronger = than those felt by smoking. You cannot overdose on cannabis, however side effects can be intense and overwhelming. Use caution when trying edible products especially if you did not make them. Try small doses at first and give yourself a few days to figure out the correct titration.

Tea
Like other herbs, cannabis can be made into a tea. Boil the water first and pour it over the cannabis. Allowing the cannabis to steep for approximately an hour and a half will ensure extraction of the cannabinoids. The effects are similar to eating it.

Tincture
A tincture is a process of using alcohol to extract cannabinoids from the plant into a liquid form. Tincture preparations have a similar effect as eating cannabis but the onset happens more rapidly and wears off more quickly.

Topical treatments
Cannabis can be absorbed through the skin and so it is ideal for topical ointments. For a cannabis compress follow the recipe as for tea. Make as much as you need to thoroughly soak the cloth you intend to use. Apply to pain and leave on ½ hour.

Dr. Recommendations

If you are lucky to live in one of the states that has passed a Medical Marijuana Law you can go to your Dr. and get an evaluation for recommendation for Medical Cannabis Usage.

If you do not live in a state that is compassionate or your Dr. refuses to write the recommendation you can still have them document your chart.  Let him know how you feel it helps you.  Then each time you meet make sure you bring up your medical marijuana usage and have the Dr. write it into you medical records. By doing this they are legally monitoring your medical marijuana usage and  it can help to protect you and enable you to use a medical necessity defense in a Court of Law.

Below are the states that have enacted a Medical Marijuana Programs

Washington Oregon California Nevada Colorado Alaska Hawaii Maine Vermont Montana Washington, DC New Jersey Rhode Island Michigan New Mexico Arizona

Alaska

SUMMARY: Fifty-eight percent of voters approved Ballot Measure #8 on November 3, 1998. The law took effect on March 4, 1999. It removes state-level criminal penalties on the use, possession and cultivation of marijuana by patients who possess written documentation from their physician advising that they “might benefit from the medical use of marijuana.” Patients diagnosed with the following illnesses are afforded legal protection under this act: cachexia; cancer; chronic pain; epilepsy and other disorders characterized by seizures; glaucoma; HIV or AIDS; multiple sclerosis and other disorders characterized by muscle spasticity; and nausea. Other conditions are subject to approval by the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services. Patients (or their primary caregivers) may legally possess no more than one ounce of usable marijuana, and may cultivate no more than six marijuana plants, of which no more than three may be mature. The law establishes a confidential state-run patient registry that issues identification cards to qualifying patients.

The medical use provisions in Alaska do not include reciprocity provisions protecting visitors from other medical use states.

AMENDMENTS: Yes.

Senate Bill 94, which took effect on June 2, 1999, mandates all patients seeking legal protection under this act to enroll in the state patient registry and possess a valid identification card. Patients not enrolled in the registry will no longer be able to argue the “affirmative defense of medical necessity” if they are arrested on marijuana charges.

MEDICAL MARIJUANA STATUTES: Alaska Stat. §§ 17.37.10 – 17.37.80 (2007).

CAREGIVERS: Yes. The caregiver must be 21 years of age or older. The caregiver can never have been convicted of a felony controlled substances offense. The caregiver must be listed by the patient as either the primary caregiver or an alternate caregiver. Only one primary caregiver and one alternate caregiver may be listed in the registry for a patient. A person may be a primary caregiver or alternate caregiver for only one patient at a time, unless the primary caregiver or alternate caregiver is simultaneously caring for two or more patients who are related to the caregiver by at least the fourth degree of kinship by blood or marriage. Alaska Stat. §17.37.010 (2007).

CONTACT INFORMATION: For more information on Alaska’s medical marijuana law, please contact:

Alaskans for Medical Rights
P.O. Box 102320
Anchorage, AK 99510
(907) 277-AKMR (2567)

Application information for the Alaska medical marijuana registry is available by writing or calling:

Alaska Department of Health and Social Services
P.O. Box 110699
Juneau, AK 99811-0699
(907) 465-5423
Attention: Terry Ahrens
terry_ahrens@health.state.ak.us

Top Arizona

SUMMARY: Just over 50 percent of voters (50.13 percent) approved Proposition 203 on November 2, 2010. The law removes state-level criminal penalties on the use and possession of marijuana by patients who have “written certification” from their physician that marijuana may alleviate his or her condition. The law took effect on April 14, 2011. Patients diagnosed with the following illnesses are afforded legal protection under this act: cancer; glaucoma; positive status for HIV or AIDS, hepatitis C, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (Lou Gehrig’s disease), Crohn’s disease, agitation of Alzheimer’s disease or any chronic or debilitating medical condition or its treatment that produces one or more of the following: cachexia or wasting syndrome, severe or chronic pain, severe nausea, seizures, including those characteristic of epilepsy, severe or persistent muscle spasms, including those characteristic of multiple sclerosis, persistent muscle spasms or seizures, severe nausea or pain. Other conditions will be subject to approval by the Arizona Department of Health Services. Patients (or their primary caregivers) may legally possess no more than two and one-half ounces of usable marijuana, and may cultivate no more than twelve marijuana plants in an “enclosed, locked facility.” The law establishes a confidential state-run patient registry that issues identification cards to qualifying patients. State-licensed nonprofit dispensaries may produce and dispense marijuana to authorized patients on a not-for-profit basis. Qualified patients who reside within 25 miles of a state-licensed dispensary facility will not be permitted to cultivate marijuana at home. Final rules for the program, physician certification forms, and a frequently asked questions (FAQs) page are all available online at the website of the Arizona Medical Marijuana Program here. http://www.azdhs.gov/prop203/

UPDATE: On Tuesday, May 24, 2011, Republican Gov. Jan Brewer announced that the state attorney general would be seeking a declaratory judgment in federal court regarding the implementation of some aspects of the state’s medical marijuana law. Specifically, the state is seeking clarification regarding the provisions pertaining to the licensing of medical marijuana dispensaries. At this time, the Arizona Department of Health Services indicates that the agency will “continue to issue Qualifying Patient and Designated Caregiver Registry Cards.” The DOH statement appears here: http://directorsblog.health.azdhs.gov/?p=1454.

RECIPROCITY: Yes. The act defines a ‘visiting qualifying patient’ as a person ‘who has been diagnosed with a debilitating medical condition by a person who is licensed with authority to prescribe drugs to humans in the state of the person’s residence.’

Top California

SUMMARY: Fifty-six percent of voters approved Proposition 215 on November 5, 1996. The law took effect the following day. It removes state-level criminal penalties on the use, possession and cultivation of marijuana by patients who possess a “written or oral recommendation” from their physician that he or she “would benefit from medical marijuana.” Patients diagnosed with any debilitating illness where the medical use of marijuana has been “deemed appropriate and has been recommended by a physician” are afforded legal protection under this act. Conditions typically covered by the law include but are not limited to: arthritis; cachexia; cancer; chronic pain; HIV or AIDS; epilepsy; migraine; and multiple sclerosis. No set limits regarding the amount of marijuana patients may possess and/or cultivate were provided by this act, though the California Legislature adopted guidelines in 2003.

The medical use provisions in California do not include reciprocity provisions protecting visitors from other medical use states.

AMENDMENTS: Yes. Senate Bill 420, which was signed into law in October 2003 and took effect on January 1, 2004, imposes statewide guidelines outlining how much medicinal marijuana patients may grow and possess. Under the guidelines, qualified patients and/or their primary caregivers may possess no more than eight ounces of dried marijuana and/or six mature (or 12 immature) marijuana plants. However, S.B. 420 allows patients to possess larger amounts of marijuana when such quantities are recommended by a physician. The legislation also allows counties and municipalities to approve and/or maintain local ordinances permitting patients to possess larger quantities of medicinal pot than allowed under the new state guidelines.

Senate Bill 420 also mandates the California Department of State Health Services to establish a voluntary medicinal marijuana patient registry, and issue identification cards to qualified patients. To date, however, no such registry has been established.

Senate Bill 420 also grants implied legal protection to the state’s medicinal marijuana dispensaries, stating, “Qualified patients, persons with valid identification cards, and the designated primary caregivers of qualified patients … who associate within the state of California in order collectively or cooperatively to cultivate marijuana for medical purposes, shall not solely on the basis of that fact be subject to state criminal sanctions.”

MEDICAL MARIJUANA STATUTES: California Compassionate Use Act 1996, Cal. Health & Saf. Code, § 11362.5 (1996) (codifying voter initiative Prop. 215).

Cal. Health & Saf. Code, §§ 11362.7 – 11362.83 (2003) (codifying SB 420).

CAREGIVERS: Yes. Primary caregiver is the individual, designated by a qualified patient or by a person with an identification card, who has consistently assumed responsibility for the housing, health, or safety of that patient or person. The caregiver must be 18 years of age or older (unless the primary caregiver is the parent of a minor child who is a qualified patient or a person with an identification card). Cal. Health & Saf. Code, §11362.7 (2003).

CONTACT INFORMATION: For more information on California’s medical marijuana law, please contact:

California NORML
2215-R Market Street #278
San Francisco, CA 94144
(415) 563-5858
http://www.canorml.org/

For detailed information on county or municipal medical marijuana
guidelines, please visit: http://www.canorml.org/prop/local215policies.html

For a list of California doctors who recommend medical cannabis, please
visit:
www.canorml.org/prop/215physicians.html

For a list of California medical cannabis providers, please visit:
www.canorml.org/prop/cbclist.html

http://www.canorml.org/prop/local215policies.html

Top Colorado

SUMMARY: Fifty-four percent of voters approved Amendment 20 on November 7, 2000, which amends the state’s constitution to recognize the medical use of marijuana. The law took effect on June 1, 2001. It removes state-level criminal penalties on the use, possession and cultivation of marijuana by patients who possess written documentation from their physician affirming that he or she suffers from a debilitating condition and advising that they “might benefit from the medical use of marijuana.” (Patients must possess this documentation prior to an arrest.) Patients diagnosed with the following illnesses are afforded legal protection under this act: cachexia; cancer; chronic pain; chronic nervous system disorders; epilepsy and other disorders characterized by seizures; glaucoma; HIV or AIDS; multiple sclerosis and other disorders characterized by muscle spasticity; and nausea. Other conditions are subject to approval by the Colorado Board of Health. Patients (or their primary caregivers) may legally possess no more than two ounces of usable marijuana, and may cultivate no more than six marijuana plants. The law establishes a confidential state-run patient registry that issues identification cards to qualifying patients. Patients who do not join the registry or possess greater amounts of marijuana than allowed by law may argue the “affirmative defense of medical necessity” if they are arrested on marijuana charges.

The medical use provisions in Colorado do not include reciprocity provisions protecting visitors from other medical use states.

AMENDMENTS: Yes. House Bill 1284, signed into law on June 7, 2010, establishes state provisions regulating medical cannabis dispensaries. The law requires medical marijuana dispensing facilities to obtain state and local licensing approval and to be in compliance with all local zoning codes. Dispensaries must pay a state licensing fee, shall be located no closer than 1,000 feet from a school or daycare (municipalities have the authority to issue exemptions to this rule), and operators must oversee the cultivation at least 70 percent of the marijuana dispensed at the center. Licensed dispensary owners will be required to undergo criminal background checks by the state.

House Bill 1284 imposes a statewide moratorium on the establishment of new dispensaries, beginning in July 2010. HB 1284 also grants local municipalities the authority to prohibit the establishment of dispensaries in their community. Individual caregivers are legally permitted to provide medical cannabis for up to five patients in localities that have formally banned dispensaries.

Full text of the law is available here.

AMENDMENTS: Yes. Senate Bill 109, signed into law on June 7, 2010, limits the authority of physicians to recommend cannabis therapy to patients with which the doctor has had a prior counseling relationship.

Full text of the law is available here.

MEDICAL MARIJUANA STATUTES: C.O. Const. art. XVIII, §14 (2001) (codified as §0-4-287 art. XVIII).

Colo. Rev. Stat. § 18-18-406.3 (2001) (interpreting the provisions of the ballot initiative and constitutional amendment).

Colo. Rev. Stat. § 25-1.5-106 (2003) (originally enacted as § 25-1-107(1)(jj) (2001)) (describing the powers and duties of the Colorado Department of Public Health).

CAREGIVERS: Yes. Primary caregiver is a person other than the patient or the patient’s physician. The caregiver must be 18 years of age or older. A patient can only have one primary caregiver at a time. A patient who has designated a primary caregiver for himself or herself may not be designated as a primary caregiver for another patient. A primary caregiver may be listed on the medical marijuana registry for no more than 5 patients. Colo. Rev. Stat. §25-1.5-106 (2), (10) (2001).

CONTACT INFORMATION: Application information for the Colorado medical marijuana registry is available online or by writing:

Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment
HSVR-ADM2-A1
4300 Cherry Creek Drive South
Denver, CO 80246-1530
Phone: 303-692-2184
http://www.cdphe.state.co.us/hs/medicalmarijuana/fullpacket.pdf

Top Delaware

SUMMARY: Governor Jack Markell signed legislation — Senate Bill 17, The Delaware Medical Marijuana Act — into law on May 13, 2011. State regulators have up to one-year to draft regulations to formally govern the program. The law removes state-level criminal penalties on the use and possession of cannabis obtained from state-licensed facilities for patients with an authorized “debilitating medical condition.” The measure provides for the establishment of at least one non-profit ‘compassion center’ per county that would be licensed by the state to produce and dispense medical cannabis. Recommending physicians must have “bona fide physician-patient relationship” with a person before recommending the use of medical cannabis. Medical conditions that may qualify for cannabis under this act include: cancer, HIV/AIDS, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Alzheimer’s disease, and post-traumatic stress disorder, as well as cachexia, chronic pain (if the condition has not responded to previously prescribed medications), severe nausea, seizures or severe and persistent muscle spasms, including but not limited to those characteristic of multiple sclerosis. Patients may legally possess up to 6 ounces of usable marijuana, if the marijuana is obtained from a state-licensed facility. Home cultivation of marijuana is not allowed under this act. The law establishes a mandatory, confidential state-run patient registry that issues identification cards to qualifying patients. The act also provides medical marijuana patients who are not registered with the state to raise an ‘affirmative defense’ motion to dismiss at trial. This act includes reciprocity provisions protecting visitors from other medical use states.

Top District of Columbia

SUMMARY: D.C. Council Members enacted legislation in May 2010 authorizing the establishment of regulated medical marijuana dispensaries in the District of Columbia. On Monday, July 26, members of Congress allowed the measure to become law without federal interference.

The law amends the Legalization of Marijuana for Medical Treatment Initiative, a 1998 municipal ballot measure which garnered 69 percent of the vote yet was never implemented. Until 2010, D.C. city lawmakers had been barred from instituting the measure because of a Congressional ban on the issue. Congress finally lifted the ban in 2009.

Under the law, D.C. Health Department officials will oversee the creation of as many as eight facilities to dispense medical cannabis to authorized patients. Medical dispensaries would be limited to growing no more than 95 plants on site at any one time.

Both non-profit and for-profit organizations will be eligible to operate the dispensaries.

Qualifying D.C. patients will be able to obtain medical cannabis at these facilities, but will not be permitted under the law to grow their own medicine. Patients diagnosed with the following illnesses are afforded legal protection under this act: HIV or AIDS; glaucoma; conditions characterized by severe and persistent muscle spasms, such as multiple sclerosis; cancer; or any other condition, as determined by rulemaking, that is: “(i) chronic or long-lasting; “(ii) debilitating or interferes with the basic functions of life; and (iii) A serious medical condition for which the use of medical marijuana is beneficial: (I) That cannot be effectively treated by any ordinary medical or surgical measure; “(II) For which there is scientific evidence that the use of medical marijuana is likely to be significantly less addictive than the ordinary medical treatment for that condition. The maximum amount of medical marijuana that any qualifying patient may possess at any moment is 2 ounces of dried medical marijuana, though this limit is subject to revision by the Mayor.

A separate provision enacted as part of the 2011 D.C. budget calls for the retail sales of medical cannabis to be subject to the District’s six percent sales tax rate. Low-income will be allowed to purchase medical marijuana at a greatly reduced cost under the plan.

It will likely be several months before Health officials establish a patient registry and/or begin accepting applications from the public to operate the City’s medical marijuana production and distribution centers.

The medical use provisions in the District of Columbia do not include reciprocity provisions protecting visitors from other medical use states.

CAREGIVERS: Yes. Caregiver is a person designated by a qualifying patient as the person authorized to possess, obtain from a dispensary, dispense, and assist in the administration of medical marijuana. The caregiver must be 18 years of age or older. The caregiver must be registered with the Department as the qualifying patient’s caregiver. A caregiver may only serve one qualifying patient at a time. D.C. Act 13-138 §2 (3) (2010).

CONTACT INFORMATION: DC City Council Committee on Health or DC Department of Health

Top Hawaii

SUMMARY: Governor Ben Cayetano signed Senate Bill 862 into law on June 14, 2000. The law took effect on December 28, 2000. The law removes state-level criminal penalties on the use, possession and cultivation of marijuana by patients who possess a signed statement from their physician affirming that he or she suffers from a debilitating condition and that the “potential benefits of medical use of marijuana would likely outweigh the health risks.” Patients diagnosed with the following illnesses are afforded legal protection under this act: cachexia; cancer; chronic pain; Crohn’s disease; epilepsy and other disorders characterized by seizures; glaucoma; HIV or AIDS; multiple sclerosis and other disorders characterized by muscle spasticity; and nausea. Other conditions are subject to approval by the Hawaii Department of Health. Patients (or their primary caregivers) may legally possess up to 3 ounces of usable marijuana, and may cultivate no more than seven marijuana plants, of which no more than three may be mature. The law establishes a mandatory, confidential state-run patient registry that issues identification cards to qualifying patients.

The medical use provisions in Hawaii do not include reciprocity provisions protecting visitors from other medical use states.

AMENDMENTS: No, although Hawaii has a separate statute allowing patients arrested on marijuana charges to present a “choice of evils” defense arguing that their use of marijuana is medically necessary.

MEDICAL MARIJUANA STATUTES: Haw. Rev. Stat. §§ 329-121 to 329-128 (2008).

CAREGIVERS: Yes. Primary caregiver is a person who has the responsibility for managing the well-being of the qualifying patient with respect to the medical use of marijuana. Primary caregiver is a person other than the qualifying patient, or the patient’s physician. The caregiver must be 18 years of age or older. Qualifying patients shall have only one primary caregiver an any given time. Primary caregiver shall be responsible for the care of only one qualifying patient at any given time. Haw. Rev. Stat. §§329-121; 329-123 (b),(c) (2008).

CONTACT INFORMATION: Administrative rules for Hawaii’s medical marijuana program are available online from the Drug Policy Forum of Hawaii website at: http://www.dpfhi.org/

Application information for the Hawaii medical marijuana registry is available by writing or calling:

Hawaii Department of Public Safety
919 Ala Moana Boulevard
Honolulu, HI 96814
(808) 594-0150

Top Maine

SUMMARY: Sixty-one percent of voters approved Question 2 on November 2, 1999. The law took effect on December 22, 1999. It removes state-level criminal penalties on the use, possession and cultivation of marijuana by patients who possess an oral or written “professional opinion” from their physician that he or she “might benefit from the medical use of marijuana.” Patients diagnosed with the following illnesses are afforded legal protection under this act: epilepsy and other disorders characterized by seizures; glaucoma; multiple sclerosis and other disorders characterized by muscle spasticity; and nausea or vomiting as a result of AIDS or cancer chemotherapy. Patients (or their primary caregivers) may legally possess no more than one and one-quarter ounces of usable marijuana, and may cultivate no more than six marijuana plants, of which no more than three may be mature. Those patients who possess greater amounts of marijuana than allowed by law are afforded a “simple defense” to a charge of marijuana possession. The law does not establish a state-run patient registry.

RECIPROCITY: Yes. Authorizes visiting qualifying patient with valid registry identification card (or its equivalent), to engage in conduct authorized for the registered patient (the medical use of marijuana) for 30 days after entering the State, without having to obtain a Maine registry identification card. Visiting qualifying patients are not authorized to obtain in Maine marijuana for medical use. Me. Rev. Stat. Tit. 22, §2423-D (2010).

AMENDMENTS: Yes. Senate Bill 611, which was signed into law on April 2, 2002, increases the amount of useable marijuana a person may possess from one and one-quarter ounces to two and one-half ounces. Question 5, approved by 59 percent of voters on November 3, 2009, mandates the Department of Health to enact rules within 120 days establishing a confidential patient registry and identification card system, and allowing for the dispensing of medicinal cannabis via state-licensed nonprofit dispensaries. The act also expands the list of qualifying illnesses for which a physician may recommend medical cannabis to include: “A. cancer, glaucoma, positive status for human immunodeficiency virus, acquired immune deficiency syndrome, hepatitis C, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Crohn’s disease, agitation of Alzheimer’s disease, nail-patella syndrome or the treatment of these conditions; B. a chronic or debilitating disease or medical condition or its treatment that produces intractable pain, which is pain that has not responded to ordinary medical or surgical measures for more than 6 months; C. a chronic or debilitating disease or medical condition or its treatment that produces one or more of the following: cachexia or wasting syndrome; severe nausea; seizures, including but not limited to those characteristic of epilepsy; or severe and persistent muscle spasms, including but not limited to those characteristic of multiple sclerosis; or D. any other medical condition or its treatment approved by the department as provided.” Read the full text.

ADDITIONAL AMENDMENTS: Yes.

LD. 1811, signed into law on April 9, 2010, authorizes the creation of up to eight nonprofit medical cannabis dispensaries – one for each of the state’s public health districts. Under the measure, dispensaries may legally “acquire, possess, cultivate, manufacture, deliver, transfer, transport, sell, supply or dispenses marijuana or related supplies and educational materials” to state-authorized medical marijuana patients. The Maine Department of Health and Human Services will oversee the licensing of these facilities.

The law also requires, for the first time, that authorized patients join a confidentially state registry. Cardholding patients will not be subject to “arrest, prosecution or penalty in any manner, including but not limited to a civil penalty or disciplinary action by any business or occupational or professional licensing board or bureau, or denied any right or privilege,” for their possession, use, or cultivation of authorized amounts of medical cannabis (2 and one-half ounces and/or six plants).

Full text of the law is available here.

ADDITIONAL AMENDMENTS: Yes.

LD 1296, signed into law on July 24, 2011, eliminates the 2010 legislative mandate requiring medical marijuana patients to be registered with the state in order to receive legal protection under state law. It also eliminates language requiring physician’s to disclose a patient’s specific medical condition with the Maine Department of Health and Human Services. In addition, LD 1296 limits the ability of law enforcement to seize cannabis from lawful patients, and mandates for the return of any seized property within seven days.

The new law takes effect in approximately 90 days.

Full text of the measure is available here.

MEDICAL MARIJUANA STATUTES: Me. Rev. Stat. tit. 22, § 2383-B(5), (6) (1999) (amended 2001).

Me. Rev. Stat. tit. 22, § 2383-B(3)(e) (amended 2001) (increasing amount of marijuana a patient may posses to two and one-half ounces).

CAREGIVERS: Yes. Primary caregiver is a person providing care for the registered patient. The caregiver must be 21 years of age or older. The caregiver can never have been convicted of a disqualifying drug offense. Patients can name one or two primary caregivers. (only one person may be allowed to cultivate marijuana for a registered patient) Me. Rev. Stat. Tit. 22, §§2422; 2425 (2010).

STATE REGULATIONS: Statement of Maine’s Medicinal Marijuana Law [PDF]

CONTACT INFORMATION: Brochures outlining Maine’s medical marijuana law are available from:

www.mainecommonsense.org

Maine Citizens for Patients Rights
PO Box 1074
Lewiston, ME 04243

Top Maryland

SUMMARY: Maryland’s legislature passed a medical marijuana affirmative defense law in 2003. This law requires the court to consider a defendant’s use of medical marijuana to be a mitigating factor in marijuana-related state prosecution. If the patient, post-arrest, successfully makes the case at trial that his or her use of marijuana is one of medical necessity, then the maximum penalty allowed by law would be a $100 fine.

MEDICAL MARIJUANA STATUTES: Maryland Darrell Putman Compassionate Use Act, Md. Code Ann., Crim. Law §5-601(c)(3)(II) (2003).

AMENDMENTS: Yes.

Senate Bill 308, signed into law on May 10, 2011, removes fines and criminal penalties for citizens who successfully raise an ‘affirmative defense’ in court establishing that they possessed limited amounts (one ounce or less) of marijuana for medical purposes. Citizens who cultivate cannabis or who possess larger amounts of marijuana may still raise an affirmative defense at trial and, if successful, will have their sentence mitigated.

Top Michigan

SUMMARY: Sixty-three percent of voters approved Proposal 1 on November 4, 2008. The law took effect on December 4, 2008. It removes state-level criminal penalties on the use, possession and cultivation of marijuana by patients who possess written documentation from their physicians authorizing the medical use of marijuana. Patients diagnosed with the following illnesses are afforded legal protection under this act: Cancer, glaucoma, positive status for human immunodeficiency virus, acquired immune deficiency syndrome, hepatitis C, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Crohn’s disease, agitation of Alzheimer’s disease, nail patella, or the treatment of these conditions. Patients are also offered legal protection if they have a chronic or debilitating disease or medical condition or treatment of said condition that produces 1 or more of the following: cachexia or wasting syndrome; severe and chronic pain; severe nausea; seizures, including but not limited to those characteristic of epilepsy; or severe and persistent muscle spasms, including but not limited to those characteristic of multiple sclerosis. Patients (or their primary caregivers) may possess no more than 12 marijuana plants kept in an enclosed, locked facility or 2.5 ounces of usable marihuana. The law establishes a confidential state-run patient registry that issues identification cards to qualifying patients. The state officially began accepting applications for the program on April 6, 2009.

RECIPROCITY: Yes. Authorizes visiting qualifying patient with registry identification card (or its equivalent) from a State that also allows the medical use of marijuana by visiting qualifying patients, to engage in the medical use of marijuana. Also authorizes a person to assist with a visiting qualifying patient’s medical use of marijuana. Mich. Comp. Law § 333.26424(j) (2008).

(other state, district, territory, commonwealth, or insular possession of the U.S. must offer reciprocity to have reciprocity in Michigan)

AMMENDMENTS: Yes

Administrative rules for the program took effect on April 4, 2009. A copy of the regulations is available here.

MEDICAL MARIJUANA STATUTES: Michigan Medical Marihuana Act, Mich. Comp. Law §§ 333.26421 – 333.26430 (2008).

CAREGIVERS: Yes. Primary caregiver is a person who has agreed to assist with a patient’s medical use of marihuana. The caregiver must be 21 years of age or older. The caregiver can never have been convicted of a felony involving illegal drugs. Each patient can only have one primary caregiver. The primary caregiver may assist no more than 5 qualifying patients with their medical use of marihuana. Mich. Comp. Law §§ 333.26423; 333.26426(d) (2008).

CONTACT INFORMATION:

Michigan Medical Marihuana Program (MMMP)
Michigan.gov/mmp

Michigan Medical Marijuana Association
http://michiganmedicalmarijuana.org/

Top Montana

SUMMARY: Sixty-two percent of voters approved Initiative 148 on November 2, 2004. The law took effect that same day. It removes state-level criminal penalties on the use, possession and cultivation of marijuana by patients who possess written documentation from their physicians authorizing the medical use of marijuana. Patients diagnosed with the following illnesses are afforded legal protection under this act: cachexia or wasting syndrome; severe or chronic pain; severe nausea; seizures, including but not limited to seizures caused by epilepsy; or severe or persistent muscle spasms, including but not limited to spasms caused by multiple sclerosis or Crohn’s disease. Patients (or their primary caregivers) may possess no more than six marijuana plants. The law establishes a confidential state-run patient registry that issues identification cards to qualifying patients.

Valid medical marijuana registry cards from other medical marijuana states are recognized in this state, so long as the cardholder is in compliance with the possession limits imposed on cardholders in this state.

RECIPROCITY: Yes. Authorizes qualifying patient with registry identification card (or its equivalent) to engage in the medical use of marijuana. Also authorizes a person to assist with a qualifying patient’s medical use of marijuana. Mont. Code Ann. §50-46-201(8) (2009).

AMENDMENTS: Yes

Senate Bill 423, which became law on May 14, 2011, amends the state’s medical marijuana law. The act is due to go into effect on July 1, 2011. Among the changes mandated by this act:

  • Chronic pain patients will face more stringent requirements to qualify under the law, and in some cases may require a recommendation from two separate physicians;
  • Patients found guilty of marijuana DUI will have their medical marijuana privileges revoked;
  • Advising physicians will be reported to the Board of Medical Examiners if they recommend for more than 25 patients per year; Physician will be responsible for the costs of this investigation;
  • Caregivers may accept no monetary compensation for providing cannabis to qualified patients.

A comprehensive summary of the primary provisions of SB 423 may be found here. Full text of the measure is online here.

Several provisions of SB 423 are presently being litigated in court.

MEDICAL MARIJUANA STATUTES: Montana Medical Marijuana Act, Mont. Code Ann. §§ 50-46-1 to 50-46-2 (2007).

CONTACT INFORMATION: www.dphhs.mt.gov/medicalmarijuana/

Top Nevada

SUMMARY: Sixty-five percent of voters approved Question 9 on November 7, 2000, which amends the states’ constitution to recognize the medical use of marijuana. The law took effect on October 1, 2001. The law removes state-level criminal penalties on the use, possession and cultivation of marijuana by patients who have “written documentation” from their physician that marijuana may alleviate his or her condition. Patients diagnosed with the following illnesses are afforded legal protection under this act: AIDS; cancer; glaucoma; and any medical condition or treatment to a medical condition that produces cachexia, persistent muscle spasms or seizures, severe nausea or pain. Other conditions are subject to approval by the health division of the state Department of Human Resources. Patients (or their primary caregivers) may legally possess no more than one ounce of usable marijuana, and may cultivate no more than seven marijuana plants, of which no more than three may be mature. The law establishes a confidential state-run patient registry that issues identification cards to qualifying patients. Patients who do not join the registry or possess greater amounts of marijuana than allowed by law may argue the “affirmative defense of medical necessity” if they are arrested on marijuana charges.

The medical use provisions in Nevada do not include reciprocity provisions protecting visitors from other medical use states.

AMENDMENTS: No.

MEDICAL MARIJUANA STATUTES: Nev. Rev. Stat. §§ 453A.010 – 453A.240 (2008).

CAREGIVERS: Yes. Designated primary caregiver is a person who has significant responsibility for managing the well-being of a person diagnosed with a chronic or debilitating medical condition. Caregiver does not include the attending physician. The caregiver must be 18 years of age or older. Patients may only have one designated primary caregiver. Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. §§435A.080(1)(a), (2); 435A.250(2) (2008).

CONTACT INFORMATION: Application information for the Nevada medical marijuana registry is available by writing or calling:

Nevada Department of Health and Human Services, Nevada State Health Division
4150 Technology Way, Suite 104
Carson City, Nevada 89706
Phone: 775-687-7594
Fax: 775-684-4156
health.nv.gov/MedicalMarijuana.htm

Top New Jersey

SUMMARY: Governor Jon Corzine signed the New Jersey Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act into law on January 18, 2010. As initially passed, the law was scheduled to take effect in July 2010. However, lawmakers in June amended the legislation at the behest of Republican Gov. Chris Christie to delay the enactment of the law until October 1, 2010. The law mandates the state to promulgate rules governing the distribution of medical cannabis to state-authorized patients. These rules shall address the creation of up to six state-licensed “alternative treatment centers.” Patients diagnosed with the following illnesses are afforded legal protection under this act: cancer, glaucoma, seizure and/or spasticity disorders (including epilepsy), Lou Gehrig’s disease, multiple sclerosis, muscular dystrophy, HIV/AIDS, inflammatory bowel disease (including Crohn’s disease), any terminal illness if a doctor has determined the patient will die within a year. Other conditions are subject to approval by the state Department of Health. Patients authorized to use marijuana under this act will not be permitted to cultivate their own cannabis, and are limited to the possession of two ounces of marijuana per month. Additional information on this measure is available here.

The medical use provisions in New Jersey do not include reciprocity provisions protecting visitors from other medical use states.

CAREGIVERS: Yes. Primary Caregiver is a person who has agreed to assist with a registered qualifying patient’s medical use of marijuana. Primary caregiver cannot be the patient’s physician. Primary caregiver must be a resident of New Jersey. The primary caregiver can never have been convicted of a felony drug offense. The caregiver must be 18 years of age or older. The caregiver may only have one qualifying patient at any one time. N.J. Stat. Ann. §24:6I-3 (2010).

  • (Registration process for caregivers has not yet been determined.)

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

New Jersey NORML
http://www.normlnj.org

Coalition for Medical Marijuana — New Jersey
http://www.cmmnj.org/

Top New Mexico

SUMMARY: Governor Bill Richardson signed Senate Bill 523, “Lynn and Erin Compassionate Use Act,” into law on April 2, 2007. The new law took effect on July 1, 2007. The law mandates the state Department of Health by October 1, 2007, to promulgate rules governing the use and distribution of medical cannabis to state-authorized patients. These rules shall address the creation of state-licensed “cannabis production facilities,” the development of a confidential patient registry and a state-authorized marijuana distribution system, and “define the amount of cannabis that is necessary to constitute an adequate supply” for qualified patients.

The medical use provisions in New Mexico do not include reciprocity provisions protecting visitors from other medical use states.

AMENDMENTS: Yes. In January 2009, the New Mexico Department of Health finalized rules governing the production, distribution, and use of medicinal cannabis under state law. Patients registered with the state Department of Health and who are diagnosed with the following illnesses are afforded legal protection under these rules:

  • Arthritis
  • Severe chronic pain
  • Painful peripheral neuropathy
  • Intractable nausea/vomiting
  • Severe anorexia/cachexia
  • Hepatitis C infection currently receiving antiviral treatment
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Post-traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (Lou Gehrig’s disease)
  • Cancer
  • Glaucoma
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Damage to the nervous tissue of the spinal cord with intractable spasticity
  • Epilepsy
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Hospice patients

Other conditions are subject to approval by the Department of Health. Patients may legally possess six ounces of medical cannabis (or more if authorized by their physician) and/or 16 plants (four mature, 12 immature) under this act.

State regulations also authorize non-profit facilities to apply with the state to produce and dispense medical cannabis. State licensed producers may grow up to 95 mature plants at one time. (UPDATE! The New Mexico Department of Health finalized revised regulations in December 2010 increasing the number of plants that may be produced at one time from 95 to 150. The updated regulations also allow licensed producers to obtain plants, seeds, and/or usable cannabis from other non-profit producers. The licensing fee for producers is: $5,000 for producers licensed less than one year, $10,000 for more than one year, $20,000 for more than two years and $30,000 for more than three years. For further information, please see: http://nmhealth.org/idb/medical_cannabis.shtml)

MEDICAL MARIJUANA STATUTES: Lynn and Erin Compassionate Use Act, N.M. Stat. Ann. § 30-31C-1 (2007).

CAREGIVERS: Yes. Primary caregiver is designated by patient’s practitioner as necessary to take responsibility for managing the well-being of a qualified patient with respect to the medical use of cannabis. Primary caregiver must be a resident of New Mexico. The caregiver must be 18 years of age or older. N.M. Stat. Ann. §26-2B-3(F) (2007).

CONTACT INFORMATION: Please contact the Medical Cannabis Program Coordinator at (505) 827-2321 or medical.cannabis@state.nm.us or visit www.nmhealth.org/marijuanahtml for more information.

Top Oregon

SUMMARY: Fifty-five percent of voters approved Measure 67 on November 3, 1998. The law took effect on December 3, 1998. It removes state-level criminal penalties on the use, possession and cultivation of marijuana by patients who possess a signed recommendation from their physician stating that marijuana “may mitigate” his or her debilitating symptoms. Patients diagnosed with the following illnesses are afforded legal protection under this act: cachexia; cancer; chronic pain; epilepsy and other disorders characterized by seizures; glaucoma; HIV or AIDS; multiple sclerosis and other disorders characterized by muscle spasticity; and nausea. Other conditions are subject to approval by the Health Division of the Oregon Department of Human Resources. Patients (or their primary caregivers) may legally possess no more than three ounces of usable marijuana, and may cultivate no more than seven marijuana plants, of which no more than three may be mature. The law establishes a confidential state-run patient registry that issues identification cards to qualifying patients. Patients who do not join the registry or possess greater amounts of marijuana than allowed by law may argue the “affirmative defense of medical necessity” if they are arrested on marijuana charges.

The Oregon law does not include a reciprocity provision. However, the Oregon Court of Appeals has ruled (and the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program has confirmed) that patients from out of state are permitted to register with the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program to obtain a registry identification card, the same as an Oregon resident, which will protect them from arrest or prosecution while in Oregon. These out of state patients are required to obtain a recommendation for the medical use of marijuana from an Oregon licensed physician. State v. Berringer, 229 P3d 615 (2010).

AMENDMENTS: Yes.

House Bill 3052, which took effect on July 21, 1999, mandates that patients (or their caregivers) may only cultivate marijuana in one location, and requires that patients must be diagnosed by their physicians at least 12 months prior to an arrest in order to present an “affirmative defense.” This bill also states that law enforcement officials who seize marijuana from a patient pending trial do not have to keep those plants alive. Last year the Oregon Board of Health approved agitation due to Alzheimer’s disease to the list of debilitating conditions qualifying for legal protection.

In August 2001, program administrators filed established temporary procedures further defining the relationship between physicians and patients. The new rule defines attending physician as “a physician who has established a physician/patient relationship with the patient; … is primarily responsible for the care and treatment of the patients; … has reviewed a patient’s medical records at the patient’s request, has conducted a thorough physical examination of the patient, has provided a treatment plan and/or follow-up care, and has documented these activities in a patient file.”

Also, Senate Bill 1085, which took effect on January 1, 2006, raises the quantity of cannabis that authorized patients may possess from seven plants (with no more than three mature) and three ounces of cannabis to six mature cannabis plants, 18 immature seedlings, and 24 ounces of usable cannabis. However, those state-qualified patients who possess cannabis in amounts exceeding the new state guidelines will no longer retain the ability to argue an “affirmative defense” of medical necessity at trial. Patients who fail to register with the state, but who possess medical cannabis in amounts compliant with state law, still retain the ability to raise an “affirmative defense” at trial.

Other amendments to Oregon’s medical marijuana law redefine “mature plants” to include only those cannabis plants that are more than 12 inches in height and diameter, and establish a state-registry for those authorized to produce medical cannabis to qualified patients.

MEDICAL MARIJUANA STATUTES:Oregon Medical Marijuana Act, Or. Rev. Stat. § 475.300 (2007).

CAREGIVERS: Yes. Designated primary caregiver is the person that has significant responsibility for managing the well-being of a person who has been diagnosed with a debilitating medical condition. Primary caregiver does not include the patient’s physician. The caregiver must be 18 years of age or older. A patient may only have one primary caregiver. Or. Rev. Stat. §§ 475.302(5); 475.312(2) (2007).

CONTACT INFORMATION: Application information for the Oregon medical marijuana registry is available online or by writing:

Oregon Department of Human Services
800 NE Oregon St.
Portland, OR 97232
(503) 731-4000
http://egov.oregon.gov/DHS/ph/ommp/index.shtml

Oregon Cannabis Patients registry: 1 (877) 600-6767

Oregon NORML Medical Marijuana Act Handbook (PDF)

Top Rhode Island

SUMMARY: The Edward O. Hawkins and Thomas C. Slater Medical Marijuana Act took effect immediately upon passage on January 3, 2006. The law removes state-level criminal penalties on the use, possession and cultivation of marijuana by patients who possess “written certification” from their physician stating, “In the practitioner’s professional opinion, the potential benefits of the medical use of marijuana would likely outweigh the health risks for the qualifying patient.” Patients diagnosed with the following illnesses are afforded legal protection under this act: cachexia; cancer; glaucoma; Hepatitis C; severe, debilitating, chronic pain; severe nausea; seizures, including but not limited to, those characteristic of epilepsy; or severe and persistent muscle spasms, including but not limited to, those characteristic of multiple sclerosis or Crohn’s Disease; or agitation of Alzheimer’s Disease. Other conditions are subject to approval by the Rhode Island Department of Health. Patients (and/or their primary caregivers) may legally possess 2.5 ounces of cannabis and/or 12 plants, and their cannabis must be stored in an indoor facility. The law establishes a mandatory, confidential state-run patient registry that issues identification cards to qualifying patients. Patients who do not register with the Department of Health, but have received certification from their physician to use medicinal cannabis, may raise an affirmative defense at trial.

RECIPROCITY: Yes. Authorizes a patient with a debilitating medical condition, with a registry identification card (or its equivalent), to engage in the medical use of marijuana. Also authorizes a person to assist with the medical use of marijuana by a patient with a debilitating medical condition. R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6-4(k) (2006).

AMENDMENTS: Yes.

In June 2007, the Rhode Island House and Senate enacted legislation eliminating the sunset clause of the The Edward O. Hawkins and Thomas C. Slater Medical Marijuana Act, making the provisional program permanent

ADDITIONAL AMENDMENTS: Yes.

In 2009, lawmakers enacted legislation authorizing the establishment of state-licensed not-for-profit ‘compassion centers’ to “acquire, possess, cultivate, manufacture, deliver, transfer, transport, supply or dispense marijuana, or related supplies and educational materials, to registered qualifying patients and their registered primary caregivers.” The Rhode Island Department of Health will oversee the licensing and regulating of these facilities. Copies of the regulations are available for public inspection in the Cannon Building, Room #201, Rhode Island Department of Health, 3 Capitol Hill, Providence, Rhode Island, on the Department’s website: http://www.health.ri.gov/ or the Secretary of State’s website: http://www.sos.ri.gov/rules/, by calling 401-222-7767 or by e-mail to Bill.Dundulis@health.ri.gov.

ADDITIONAL AMENDMENTS: Yes.

In 2010, lawmakers enacted legislation, House Bill 8172, ensuring the confidentiality of medical marijuana patients’ records. The law states, in part, “Applications and supporting information submitted by qualifying patients, including information regarding their primary caregivers and practitioners, are confidential and protected under the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, and shall be exempt from the provisions of the RIGL chapter 38-2 et seq. the Rhode Island access to public records act and not subject to disclosure, except to authorized employees of the department as necessary to perform official duties of the department.”

MEDICAL MARIJUANA STATUTES: The Edward O. Hawkins and Thomas C. Slater Medical Marijuana Act, R.I. Gen. Laws § 21-28.6 (2006).

CAREGIVERS: Yes. The caregiver must be 21 years of age or older. Primary caregiver may assist no more than 5 qualifying patients with their medical use of marijuana. R.I. Gen. Laws 1956, §21-28.6-3 (9) (2006).

CONTACT INFORMATION: http://www.health.state.ri.us/
Application Forms are available at www.health.ri.gov/hsr/mmp/index.php or by visiting room 104 at the Health Department, 3 Capitol Hill, Providence.

More helpful information can be found here: http://ripatients.org/.

Top Vermont

SUMMARY: Senate Bill 76 became law without Gov. James Douglas’ signature on May 26, 2004. The law takes effect on July 1, 2004. The law removes state-level criminal penalties on the use, possession and cultivation of marijuana by patients diagnosed with a “debilitating medical condition.” Patients diagnosed with the following illnesses are afforded legal protection under this act: HIV or AIDS, cancer, and Multiple Sclerosis. Patients (or their primary caregiver) may legally possess no more than two ounces of usable marijuana, and may cultivate no more than three marijuana plants, of which no more than one may be mature. The law establishes a mandatory, confidential state-run registry that issues identification cards to qualifying patients.

The medical use provisions in Vermont do not include reciprocity provisions protecting visitors from other medical use states.

AMENDMENTS: Yes.

Senate Bill 7, which took effect on July 1, 2007, expands the definition of “debilitating medical condition” to include: “(A) cancer, multiple sclerosis, positive status for human immunodeficiency virus, acquired immune deficiency syndrome, or the treatment of these conditions, if the disease or the treatment results in severe, persistent, and intractable symptoms; or (B) a disease, medical condition, or its treatment that is chronic, debilitating, and produces severe, persistent, and one or more of the following intractable symptoms: cachexia or wasting syndrome; severe pain; severe nausea; or seizures.”

The measure also raises the quantity of medical cannabis patients may legally possess under state law from one mature and/or two immature plants to two mature and/or seven immature plants. Senate Bill 7 also amends state law so that licensed physicians in neighboring states can legally recommend cannabis to Vermont patients.

ADDITIONAL AMENDMENTS: Yes.

Senate Bill 17, which was signed into law on June 2, 2011, allows up to four state-licensed facilities to dispense marijuana to medically authorized patients. Each dispensary will be licensed by the state Department of Public Safety and will be permitted to serve up to 1,000 registered patients. The Department is in the process of developing rules to carry out the new law. The Department is anticipated to begin issuing licenses within six or seven months and must begin doing so within one year.

MEDICAL MARIJUANA STATUTES: Therapeutic Use of Cannabis, Vt. Stat. Ann. tit. 18, §§ 4471- 4474d (2003).

CAREGIVERS: Yes. Registered caregiver is a person who has agreed to undertake responsibility for managing the well-being of a registered patient with respect to the use of marijuana for symptom relief. The registered caregiver can never have been convicted of a drug-related crime. The caregiver must be 21 years of age or older. Patients may only have one registered caregiver at a time. Registered caregiver may serve only one registered patient at a time. Vt. Stat. Ann. Tit. 18, §4472(6); 4474(1),(2)(c) (2003).

CONTACT INFORMATION:

Marijuana Registry
Department of Public Safety
03 South Main Street
Waterbury, Vermont 05671
802-241-5115
www.safeaccessnow.org/article.php?id=2012

Top Washington

SUMMARY: Fifty-nine percent of voters approved Measure 692 on November 3, 1998. The law took effect on that day. It removes state-level criminal penalties on the use, possession and cultivation of marijuana by patients who possess “valid documentation” from their physician affirming that he or she suffers from a debilitating condition and that the “potential benefits of the medical use of marijuana would likely outweigh the health risks.” Patients diagnosed with the following illnesses are afforded legal protection under this act: cachexia; cancer; HIV or AIDS; epilepsy; glaucoma; intractable pain (defined as pain unrelieved by standard treatment or medications); and multiple sclerosis. Other conditions are subject to approval by the Washington Board of Health. Patients (or their primary caregivers) may legally possess or cultivate no more than a 60-day supply of marijuana. The law does not establish a state-run patient registry.

The medical use provisions in Washington do not include reciprocity provisions protecting visitors from other medical use states.

AMENDMENTS: Yes.

Senate Bill 6032, mandated the Department of Health to “adopt rules defining the quantity of marijuana that could reasonably be presumed to be a sixty-day supply for qualifying patients.” In October 2008, the department finalized guidelines allowing patients to cultivate up to 15 cannabis plants and/or possess up to 24 ounces of usable marijuana. The new limits took effect on November 2, 2008.

Patients who possess larger quantities of cannabis than those approved by the Department will continue to receive legal protection under the law if they present evidence indicating that they require such amounts to adequately treat their qualifying medical condition.

Senate Bill 6032 also affirmed changes previously recommended by the state’s Medical Quality Assurance Commission to expand the state’s list of qualifying conditions to include Crohn’s disease, hepatitis c, and any “diseases, including anorexia, which results in nausea, vomiting, wasting, appetite loss, cramping, seizures, muscle spasms, and/or spasticity, when these symptoms are unrelieved by standard treatments or medications.”

It also limits the ability of police to seize medicinal cannabis that is “determined … [to be] possessed lawfully [by an authorized patients] under the … law.”

ADDITIONAL AMMENDMENTS: Yes.

Senate Bill 5798 allows additional health care professionals including naturopaths, physician’s assistants, osteopathic physicians, osteopathic physicians assistants, and advanced registered nurse practitioners to legally recommend marijuana therapy to their patients. The new law will take effect on June 10, 2010.

MEDICAL MARIJUANA STATUTES: Wash. Rev. Code §§ 69.51A – 69.51A.901 (2007).

CAREGIVERS: Yes. Designated provider is a person who has been designated in writing by a patient to serve as a designated provider. The caregiver must be 18 years of age or older. The designated provider is prohibited from consuming marijuana obtained for the personal, medical use of the patient for whom the individual is acting as designated provider. The designated provider may be the primary caregiver for only one patient at any one time. Wash. Rev. Code §§69.51A.010, 69.51A.040 (2007).

CONTACT INFORMATION: Fact sheets outlining Washington’s medical marijuana law are available from:

Washington State Department of Health
101 Israel Road SE
Tumwater, WA 98501
(800) 525-0127
Attention: Glenda Moore
http://www.doh.wa.gov/

ACLU of Washington, Drug Reform Project
(206) 624-2184
http://www.aclu-wa.org/detail.cfm?id=182