Medical marijuana is available in regular rotation throughout the news cycle these days. And rightfully so: Medical cannabis is an effective treatment for various conditions and diseases, including chronic pain, seizures, and cancer. It’s also a safer alternative to prescription drugs like opioids. People use it daily around the country, and many states are aboard the medical marijuana train. But every state is difficult, and navigating the world of medical marijuana can be tricky. If you live in Missouri but are uncertain about how medical marijuana works in your state, then this article is for you. Check it out to learn more.
Missouri Doesn’t Offer Reciprocity With Other States
Missouri doesn’t have reciprocity with other state programs. Reciprocity is the ability to use your out-of-state marijuana card in another state. If your state doesn’t have reciprocity with other states, you can’t use it. It’s that simple. At this time, Missouri doesn’t offer reciprocity with other states, meaning a licensed Missouri dispensary is only allowed to accept a medical card from within the state.
Missouri Has Similar Qualifying Conditions To Other States
Qualifying conditions in Missouri are typical of the conditions normally reserved for medical marijuana treatments. Here’s a short list to help guide you:
- Chronic pain conditions or muscle issues
- Multiple sclerosis
- Certain psychiatric disorders
- Parkinson’s disease
- Tourette’s syndrome
- Chrohn’s Disease
- Huntington’s disease
- Hepatitis C
- Inflammatory bowel disease
- Sickle cell anemia
- Many different chronic conditions
This list isn’t exhaustive, but it can help act as a guidepost to what to discuss with your doctor.
A Licensed Doctor Must Prescribe Marijuana
Like other states, a licensed doctor must help a patient decide if they should seek medical marijuana as a treatment and make a recommendation. An honest and meaningful discussion with your doctor about using medical marijuana use is crucial before receiving certification and visiting a dispensary. Though the number of Dispensaries in Missouri is limited, the program will likely expand over time. The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services regulates dispensaries and medical marijuana within the state. If you believe medical marijuana is right for your condition, speak with a state-licensed doctor, get a recommendation, apply for a card, and visit a qualifying dispensary to take advantage of the program.
Dispensaries Can Only Sell Approved Products
Dispensaries in Missouri have some limitations. To begin with, they’re only allowed to sell cannabis products that a state department has approved. Patients and caregivers can only purchase up to four ounces of medical marijuana that Missouri deems compliant with its standards. For reference, that’s about two grams of dried cannabis or one-eighth of an ounce of edible products. In addition, patients must apply to Missouri’s Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) and pay the standard $28 application fee. Typically, Missouri allows medical cardholders to have up to six flowering marijuana plants growing in their home (as long as they are privately grown and kept away from children). But the state also allows patients and caregivers to grow six clone plants. No more than 12 plants are allowed. This amount is beneficial for medical cannabis users who might have difficulty finding or traveling to dispensaries in their area. They might also have mobility issues and be unable to travel long distances. Ultimately, this can help them use medical marijuana in the state while complying with the law.
Recreational Use Isn’t Legal…Yet
Recreational marijuana use might become a reality in Missouri. This year (2022), an amendment—amendment 3—is on the ballot, intending to allow recreational marijuana in Missouri. The passage of Amendment 3 may have a minimal immediate impact on employers in Missouri. Even if it passes, Missouri employers will retain the right to prohibit alcohol and drug use at work. Missouri employers could also penalize workers for using recreational marijuana, even if they consumed it during their own time and not on the job. That might seem odd, but every company has expectations of their employees outlined in the employment agreements, so it’s not much of a shock. The amendment would revise and expand the existing law regarding the legalization of marijuana for medical purposes—allowing individuals aged twenty-one years old or over to legally possess, purchase, consume, and cultivate cannabis plants. If voters approve the measure, it will go into effect on December 8, 2022. Four years ago, voting worked for medical marijuana, but whether it will have the same impact on recreational use in the state remains to be seen.