Qualifying for Medical Marijuana in Israel

Updated on August 21, 2018.  Medical content reviewed by Dr. Joseph Rosado, MD, M.B.A, Chief Medical Officer

As a significant hub for medical marijuana research, Israel has the knowledge to provide their patients with a comprehensive medical marijuana program. Folks with conditions approved under Israeli regulations can get a medical marijuana card that lets them use cannabis medication.

Medical Marijuana Qualifications in Israel

Only certain kinds of patients can apply for a medical marijuana permit in Israel. To get a medical marijuana card and join Israel’s official program, you must have a qualifying condition like:

  • Cancer
  • Chronic neuropathic pain
  • PTSD
  • Colitis
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Epilepsy
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Tourette’s Syndrome
  • Terminal illness

In some cases, your doctor can petition to have another condition added to the official list. Or, they can request special permission for you if you don’t have a listed condition, but are experiencing symptoms your doctor believes cannabis can treat. However, you may have a better chance of qualifying if you have an already approved diagnosis.

How to Become an Israeli Medical Cannabis Patient

You can sign up for a medical cannabis card in just a few steps. The Israel Ministry of Health outlines the entire application process on their website, but we can give you a quick overview.

To begin the application process, patients must work with a specialist to submit the proper paperwork. The professional must specialize in the condition that the patient wants to treat, and they must have special training from the government to recommend medical marijuana. Once you finish everything, the doctor will submit the application for you.

After that, the Health Ministry’s Medical Cannabis Unit will review your papers. You can ask for a text notification to confirm they received it. The Medical Cannabis Unit will decide whether to accept or reject you and send you a notification shortly afterwards.

If you’re approved for a medical marijuana card, you’ll receive it in the mail. Your medication supplier will also receive a copy of your permit.

What Do Medical Marijuana Patients Get Access to?

Medical marijuana patients in Israel get access to the most common marijuana medications, such as bud, oil, vaping products and more.

Since Israel grows its own medical marijuana, most patients get to medicate with locally-sourced cannabis products. Many cannabis companies, even ones from the United States, conduct research and development in Israel, giving local patients access to innovative medication.

The type and quantity of marijuana products a patient can use depend on what the patient’s specialist recommends. Depending on the nature and severity of your condition, you may have a higher dosage or a lower one. You may also have to use a certain kind of product due to your symptoms. For example, patients suffering from conditions that affect their lungs should use cannabis-infused topicals or edibles if possible rather than smoking their weed.

Although patients could previously only carry and use their medication at their home address, regulations have recently loosened. They can now use orally administered oil anywhere, and they can vape in any private area.

Legal Protections for Medical Marijuana Patients in Israel

Israel builds legal protections into its application process, so you can use medical marijuana without worry. If you follow the rules set in place by the program, you shouldn’t be charged with any marijuana-related crimes. Your medical marijuana card serves as proof that you own your medicine and have permission to use it.

The Israeli government decriminalized marijuana in 2017, so people without a medical card will only get a fine for their first marijuana-related offense. Israel now focuses on education about marijuana instead of harsh criminalization. If you think you were wrongly persecuted, consult with a lawyer right away to learn your rights.

How to Learn More About Medical Marijuana

Although we’re headquartered in the United States, MarijuanaDoctors.com is dedicated to helping patients all over the world. Learning how medical marijuana can treat your condition helps you make the right decisions for your treatment plan. Check out our library of resources to learn about treatable conditions and the science behind cannabis.

Resources for Medical Marijuana Patients in Israel