How to Get a Medical Card in Oregon
Oregon is a considerable mecca for marijuana. With its numerous dispensaries, local organic grow farms and legal consumption across the board, Oregon’s cannabis offerings are some of the best in the country. Recreational users have access to potent plants but the strongest strains are saved for medical patients. Native and new coming Oregonians with certain ailments may qualify for a medical card in Oregon through the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program (OMMP).
The Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC) recently took over the state’s legal and medical marijuana programs, also changing some of the rules and regulations as to how each works. There is a particular process to receive and OMMP card and not everyone will be successful in doing so.
There are a few qualifying medical conditions that a potential patient would need to have to qualify for an OMMP card. The potential patient would need to get a recommendation from an attending physician for the medical condition.
Oregon law requires a physician to be licensed under ORS chapter 677 with the title Doctor of Medicine (MD) or Doctor of Osteopathy (DO). Naturopaths, nurse practitioners and chiropractors may not offer a medical marijuana recommendations.
A patient must have one of the following ailments to be considered for a medical card in Oregon:
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- A degenerative neurological condition like Alzheimer’s Disease or Parkinson’s Disease
- A medical condition or reaction to medication for a condition that causes one or more of the following symptoms: severe pain, severe nausea, cachexia (a weight loss disease that can be the result of cancer or HIV/AIDS), muscle spasms, or seizures.
When seeking a medical marijuana recommendation from an attending physician, the patient must provide their health history. There must be a history of the specific condition, as well as a record of attempted treatment methods. Comorbidities and a detailing of substance misuse or abuse, if any, should be addressed in the medical history as well.
The Application Process
Once an attending physician has given the go-ahead, a patient must then apply for the OMMP program. The basic application fee for a standard medical marijuana card in Oregon is $200. Government assistance program discounts are available to those that qualify. Vets and those with Supplemental Security Income (SSI) only pay $20 and those receiving food stamps through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) pay just $60. If a patient has a particular grower they’d like assigned themselves to, that grower would have to cover the $200 grower application as well as the patient’s application.
When fees are out of the way, the actual application process is easy. Potential patients can fill out their medical card application online after creating an account on the ommpsystem.oregon.gov website. Upon completion of the online application, the patient can print a 30-day receipt. In Oregon, this receipt carries the same legal footing as a registered ID card for 30 days.
An option to mail in a medical marijuana application is also available. They can be sent to OHA/OMMP, P.O. Box 14450, Portland, OR 97293, but make sure all of the below items are included for both the online and mail-in options.
Required Application Materials
No matter the application method, all applications have to include the following:
- OMMP application form
- Attending Physician’s Statement signed by said physician within 90 days of the application date (If an attending physician’s statement isn’t included, the applying patient isn’t legally protected by the OMMA.)
- Fee payment (Don’t send cash. Make check and money orders out to OHA/OMMP.)
- Copies of current and valid photo ID for all parties involved, I.E. the patient, any designated growers and caregivers. All parties must be Oregon residents. Applying for a minor requires submitting a form called the Declaration of Person Responsible for a Minor to Participate in the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program.
Wait It Out
Oregon’s medical marijuana program is usually backed up to some degree. Sometimes, it could take months for a patient will get their registered ID card. It doesn’t hurt to contact the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) to check the status of application.