Updated on April 9, 2019. Medical content reviewed by Dr. Joseph Rosado, MD, M.B.A, Chief Medical Officer
Patients in Massachusetts diagnosed with one of the following severe, debilitating, or life-threatening medical conditions, are afforded legal protection under the Massachusetts Medical Marijuana law, as per Ballot Question 3:
Massachusetts Ballot Question 3, was approved on November 06, 2012 — effective January 01, 2013 — enacting that “no punishment under state law for qualifying patients, physicians, and health care professionals, personal caregivers for patients or medical marijuana treatment center agents for the medical use of marijuana”.
As per Ballot Question 3, qualifying medical marijuana patients with a Massachusetts medical marijuana card shall not be subject to arrest or prosecution, penalized in any manner, including, but not limited to, being subject to any civil penalty, or denied any right or privilege, including, but not limited to, being subject to any disciplinary action by a professional licensing board, for the palliative use of marijuana in Massachusetts.
Massachusetts medical marijuana patients may possess a sixty-day supply, defined specifically, as “10 ounces”, of medical cannabis.
Some medical marijuana patients will claim they have a doctor’s prescription for medical marijuana, but marijuana prescriptions are in fact illegal. The federal government classifies marijuana as a schedule I drug. Therefore doctors are unable to prescribe marijuana to their patients, and medical marijuana patients cannot go to a pharmacy to fill a prescription for medical marijuana. Instead, medical marijuana doctors in Massachusetts will supply patients with a medical marijuana recommendation in compliance with state law.
According to Massachusetts medical marijuana laws, the maximum amount medical marijuana patients may possess is a sixty-day supply, defined specifically, as “10 ounces”.
In an encouraging development that should greatly benefit patients who meet medical marijuana qualifications in Massachusetts, a medical cannabis dispensary became the first to provide patients with same-day home delivery of cannabis throughout the entire state. This will be a considerable help for patients who are either homebound, have limited mobility, or live too far away from dispensaries to be able to get to them easily.
The service, known as In Good Health, would charge a delivery fee of between $30-$75 with a minimum order of $100. The farther away the residence, the higher the delivery fee. Service was not immediately available in either Martha’s Vineyard or Nantucket. There is another dispensary that delivers, but it only offers local delivery in Lowell and Boston.
Caregivers are still allowed to deliver medical cannabis to patients, but many critics worry about a lack of thorough background checks as well as the quality of the weed they transport. There have been instances where caregivers have been arrested, and as a result, patients have not been able to obtain their medicinal weed. Patients have to go through a lengthy administrative process in order to name a new caregiver if something happens to the previous one.
However, even with the questions that surround some caregivers, the people who deliver medical cannabis to patients perform a vital role. Many of them spend a great deal of time with patients and are qualified enough to determine the right strains to meet a patient’s particular needs.