“Will I qualify for medical marijuana?”
This is perhaps the most commonly asked question of patients who are interested in obtaining a Florida medical marijuana card and getting registered through the state. Below, we’ll shed some light on the Florida definitions of qualifying conditions and dissect some of the legalese to help you determine if you may be eligible.
Medical marijuana is defined by all parts of any plant of the genus cannabis and that are dispensed from a medical marijuana treatment center (MMTC) for medical use by a qualified patient.
Previous to Amendment 2, which was passed in January of 2017, low-THC medical marijuana was available only to patients of strictly defined ailments. After the passing of Amendment 2, the qualifying medical conditions were greatly expanded, opening the door to more patients who suffer from chronic, or debilitating medical conditions.
“Debilitating Medical Condition” means cancer, epilepsy, glaucoma, positive status for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Crohn’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, or other debilitating medical conditions of the same kind or class as or comparable to those enumerated, and for which a physician believes that the medical use of marijuana would likely outweigh the potential health risks for a patient.
Source: Florida Legislature
Source: Florida Department of Health
The language in Amendment 2, “other debilitating medical conditions of the same kind or class as or comparable to those enumerated,” means that a qualified medical marijuana physician has the legal right to use their medical judgement in determining if a patient has symptoms that are debilitating or similar to those specifically mentioned in the law.
Upon this determination, they are then able to recommend medical marijuana for ailments not listed specifically in the law.
The qualified physician will be the one who makes the final determination of whether a patient may be eligible for medical marijuana based on the “same kind or class” definition. Some examples of this can include:
Your first step in determining if you qualify for medical marijuana is visiting a qualified physician in the state. At your appointment, your doctor will perform an examination of you, review your medical history, and potentially diagnose you with a qualifying condition that would qualify you for medical marijuana.