Starting March 1, patients registered in the Minnesota Medical Cannabis Program will be able to buy dried marijuana flower from medical marijuana dispensaries operating in the state. In preparation for the change, registered patients interested in smokable marijuana can make consultation appointments with a pharmacist in a dispensary.
The appointment will help to ensure they are pre-approved to purchase pre-rolls, packaged dried flower, and other dispensary supplies once they are available. Consultations, either virtual or in-person, are required when a patient decides to change the medical marijuana they receive.
If the relevant administrative rules are finalized much earlier, then the sale of smokable marijuana can be expected to roll out a few days before March 1. Patients should check with their medical marijuana dispensary to get further details.
The sale of smokable marijuana is limited to caregivers and patients 21 years or older. They also have to be registered with the Medical Cannabis Program. Additionally, age verification will be required when picking up smokable medical cannabis. Thus, it is highly recommended that patients schedule an appointment at a medical marijuana dispensary ahead of time.
Minnesota Commissioner of Health, Jan Malcolm, said that patients need to assess the risk of smoking medical cannabis, including those related to lung health and secondhand smoke with any potential benefit. She added that smokable cannabis might not be the right option for everyone. Therefore, patients need to consult their healthcare practitioner first to get appropriate guidance.
Cannabis dispensaries in Minnesota will offer pre-rolls and pre-packaged dried flower of various stains and levels of cannabinoids (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). The law will only allow patients to have a smokable cannabis supply of up to 90-days.
Since various states experienced a surge in patient enrollment when dried flower was added to their medical cannabis program, the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) is prepared for a similar occurrence. Patients who want to use smokable cannabis are advised to learn where they can use the drug and the places they aren’t supposed to use it.
Registered patients are only allowed to use medical cannabis within Minnesota. In addition, they can use the drug in their private properties. Still, patients have to be cautious and avoid using smokable cannabis in situations that can expose minors to secondhand smoke or vapor.
Anyone who wants to become a patient of the Medical Cannabis Program has to be certified by a participating healthcare practitioner. Moreover, they must also have at least one of the 17 qualifying medical conditions.
The program plans to add another option for medicine later this year. Hence, infused edibles such as gummies would be available to patients effective August 1, 2022. It was approved during the MDH’s annual petition and comment process to seek public input on potential qualifying medical conditions and delivery methods for medicine.
In general, the U.S cannabis industry is expected to burgeon in the coming years. The medical cannabis market seems to be the leading contributor towards the development. The growth trajectory of the medical marijuana market size is estimated to reach approximately $27 million by 2026. That equates to a stellar Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 20.04%
Rising demand for medical cannabis is among the key factors contributing to the development. Others include increasing authorization of marijuana among various states and growing preference towards inhalation route of administration.
Considering that medical cannabis has proven to be effective in helping people with opioid addiction, many are using it as an alternative prescription drug. Since marijuana doesn’t have adverse effects compared to Opioids, many patients suffering from Osteoarthritis have opted to use it as well.
Mississippi is the latest newcomer on the list of states that have approved medical marijuana. Gov. Tate Reeves signed the legislation, which took effect immediately. Thus, it could only be a few months before the first cannabis dispensary opens. In a statement posted on Twitter, Reeves said that people in the state could do way better if they had access to medical marijuana.
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, 36 states and four territories have legalized the use of medical marijuana. The recent inclusion of Mississippi will now increase the count to 37 states.
In November 2020, a good number of Mississippi voters approved a medical cannabis initiative that would have allowed people to purchase up to five ounces a month. However, the state supreme court invalidated it six months later, ruling that the measure was not put correctly on the ballot.
Early this year, the state House and the Senate passed the final version of Senate Bill 2095. The new law will permit patients to buy up to 3.5 grams of marijuana daily or approximately 3 ounces per month. Besides specifying that plants must be grown indoors under controlled conditions, it also sets taxes on the production and sale of cannabis.
The addition of dried plants for medical cannabis patients in Minnesota provides an alternative way of using the drug. It’s a step that will likely boost the medical marijuana market in the state and the entire country.