Canada’s imminent legalization is just over the horizon, but for many Canadians seeking relief, it’s not soon enough. The country’s medical marijuana system has been revamped and improved upon several times in the past 15 years since the law was implemented, and now may be a better time than ever to get registered with the Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes program.
Below are steps you can take to register as a valid medical marijuana patient in Canada.
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Step 1: Contact Your Healthcare Practitioner
First, it’s crucial to talk to your regular physician about your symptoms, treatment options, and the possibility of cannabis as an alternative treatment option.
The qualifying conditions for medical marijuana in Canada are as follows:
Severe refractory nausea and vomiting associated with cancer chemotherapy
Loss of appetite and body weight in cancer patients and patients with HIV/AIDS
Pain and muscle spasms associated with multiple sclerosis
Chronic non-cancer pain (neuropathic)
Severe refractory cancer-associated pain
Insomnia and depressed mood associated with chronic diseases
Symptoms encountered in palliative or end-of-life care
Other symptoms or conditions authorized by your health care practitioner
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Step 2: Healthcare Practitioner Completes Authorization Form
Once you and your physician have concluded that medical cannabis would be beneficial for your ailments, they must fill out an authorization form with the following information.
Patient’s given name and surname
Patient’s date of birth (DD/MM/YYYY)
Daily quantity of dried marijuana to be used by the patient (grams / day)
Period of use in days, weeks, and/or months (Note: the period of use cannot exceed one year)
Health Care Practitioner Information:
Health care practitioner’s given name and surname
Health care practitioner’s profession/medical specialty
Health care practitioner’s business address
Full business address of the location at which the patient consulted the health care practitioner (if different than above)
Fax number (if applicable)
Email address (if applicable)
Province(s) authorized to practice in
Health care practitioner’s license number
Health care practitioner’s signature and date signed (DD/MM/YYYY)
Patients are allowed to possess up to a 30-day supply of cannabis, depending on the recommendation of their healthcare practitioner, or up to 150 grams per month.