Updated on May 22, 2020. Medical content reviewed by Dr. Joseph Rosado, MD, M.B.A, Chief Medical Officer
The State of Florida has taken a compassionate approach to remove barriers to safe, legalized medical marijuana. Americans who suffer from debilitating chronic health conditions now have a natural alternative.
The medical marijuana laws in Florida are designed to protect patient health. Patients must regularly consult with the marijuana doctor that certified them for follow-up. Certifying physicians in Florida cannot own a dispensary or work within one (conflict of interest). And medical cannabis products dispensed in Florida are highly regulated for safety.
To become certified for a medical marijuana card in Florida, you must first meet the conditions required. Patients must be diagnosed with a condition that falls under the State requirements. It is illegal for any physician to approve, or certify a Florida resident, without a qualifying diagnosis. Whether that resident is permanent or seasonal.
The following diagnosed health conditions qualify for medical marijuana certification in Florida:
Patients must also be either a permanent resident or seasonal resident of Florida. They must be diagnosed by a qualified physician, or a doctor who has completed the required training. They must be certified by a specially-licensed cannabis physician in Florida and are required to attend follow-up appointments with their medical marijuana practitioner. A Florida medical marijuana card holder must consult with their certifying doctor every seven (7) months.
After their certification, patients must be entered in the Medical Marijuana Use Registry in order to obtain their ID card.
The Office of Medical Marijuana Use (OMMU) oversees the requirements for medical marijuana. Licensed Medical Marijuana Treatment Centers (MMTCs) are the only businesses who can dispense medical cannabis.
The OMMU has authorized the sale of cannabis for use by qualified patients or to their caregivers. When a patient is under the age of 18 years, a guardian may apply for certification and a medical marijuana card for their child. Seniors who have the qualifying conditions, such as Cancer or chronic pain, can also have a family member apply. If that relative is a direct caregiver.
Before an MMTC can dispense cannabis, they must receive three different types of authorization:
The authorization process for MMTC’s in Florida includes special training, passing a certification exam, and maintaining their license for each service. Dispensaries are responsible for monitoring medical marijuana, to meet Florida legal requirements.
Once you have received your Florida medical marijuana card, you can choose any dispensary across the state. Your name will also be added to a HIPAA-compliant, secure and confidential registry of medical marijuana card holders in Florida.
Florida Department of Health:
Office of Medical Marijuana Use
4052 Bald Cypress Way, Bin M-01
Tallahassee, FL 32399
Patient & Caregiver ID Card Applications:
PO Box 31313
Tampa, FL 33631-3313
Phone: (800) 808-9580
Website: Office of Medical Marijuana Use