Updated: Dec 17, 2020
When I meet with a potential medical marijuana patient, the first discussion we have is whether they have
a medical marijuana card in their state. Often times they don't. They don't know if they qualify, how they
qualify, or how to walk through that process. Patients really do want to be legal and safe and follow all of
the correct guidelines. I can help with that, and I can help you too.
Each state's process to get a medical marijuana card is different, as are the qualifying conditions that each
state recognizes. When I am working with an out-of-state patient, we look at their state governing body
and requirements. I recommend you read the requirements very carefully, not only to understand the
process of getting your card, but to become familiar with the laws around having that card and medical
marijuana in your possession as well as drug testing, job restrictions, and so on.
In Springfield, Missouri, where I live, there are multiple steps to obtain a medical marijuana card or MMP
card. Missouri has a rather broad range of conditions that qualify for medical marijuana and ultimately
leaves the decision to the physician providing the patient certificate. I refer all my patients to the How to
Apply and Patient Information page at the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services website for
all the details.
Does it seem overwhelming? I get it. Reading government documents is not everyone's jam. You will
have to know more detailed information eventually, but the following are the general steps.
How to Obtain Your Missouri Medical Marijuana Card:
Look at the list of qualifying conditions. Identify the one that most closely resembles your condition. If you do not see one, don't panic. That's what the physician is for. If you have medical documents with diagnoses, conditions, or medications on them, I recommend keeping them handy as they help the physician. More on this in a minute.
Contact one to three physician clinics who provide medical marijuana exams and Physician Certifications. They will likely NOT BE your family physician or local healthcare provider. These physicians must go through a process with the state in order to certify patients. If they are associated with a hospital organization, they are not allowed to provide this service. I say contact one to three physician clinics because the prices and services can vary greatly. If you need assistance, I keep a list handy in my office.
Decide on the physician/clinic and schedule your appointment. Most appointments are done virtually these days, which makes it handy. There are also providers outside Missouri who are certified in the state, so don't be afraid to use them. The physician/clinic may ask for medical records to verify your conditions and medications. It is not necessary to provide your entire medical record. They are looking for diagnoses or medications that are generally on an end-of-visit summary from your physician.
At the conclusion of your physician visit, you will receive a Standard Physician Certification Form by email. Some clinics offer a service that completes your state application process for you, which is ideal for many. Others prefer to do it themselves, and either is fine.
Return to the Missouri DHSS website. You need to complete the Patient Application Registration. The website provides a detailed checklist of items you need to have when applying. Once the registration is complete, you wait. MO DHSS will notify you by email if there are problems to resolve and/or when you are approved. Be prepared to pay for your application too.
Download AND print your medical marijuana card. You will be required to show this every time you enter a medical marijuana dispensary in the state, along with your Missouri driver's license or state ID.
You are now ready to visit a Missouri dispensary. I recommend meeting with an experienced cannabis
nurse prior to going so you know what you are looking for, what to expect, and how to manage your
medical marijuana journey. Good luck and know that I am experienced and am here to help you.