Updated on October 27, 2021. Medical content reviewed by Dr. Joseph Rosado, MD, M.B.A, Chief Medical Officer
Do you have a chronic health condition and want to try doctor-supervised cannabis? Getting a medical card in Minnesota is not hard if you have one or more than one qualifying health condition.
When it comes to paying a registration fee for your medical cannabis card, Minnesota is one of the more expensive states. Patients are required to pay a state fee of $200 with the Minnesota Medical Cannabis application form, and for annual renewal.
However, patients that receive income support from Social Security, MinnesotaCare, IHS, Railroad disability, military veterans (indemnity compensation for VA dependency) may qualify for a reduced fee of $50.
Physicians in Minnesota also charge a fee for the mandatory health evaluation. That is a health history check by a doctor to make sure that medical marijuana is a safe way to help manage your symptoms.
As of October 2021, there are 26,000 patients living in Minnesota who have successfully registered for the MN medical marijuana program.
Patients in Minnesota currently do not visit a retail dispensary (like other states have). There are Cannabis Patient Centers that allow patients to pick up their prescribed doses of medical marijuana.
In Minnesota, patients are prescribed cannabis if they are registered with the state. But unlike other states, patients do not receive a medical card.
There are some changes that could be coming to Minnesota in 2022, as part of the omnibus health and human services bill. The legislation was approved in June 2021. But the final draft and review will not be finalized until early 2022.
The omnibus health and human services bill amends the current medical marijuana legislation that was established in 2014. It made Minnesota one of the most strict medical cannabis programs in the country.
Patients who are eighteen (18) years of age or older may apply and become a registered patient in the Minnesota medical cannabis program. Individuals who are under the age of eighteen years require parental consent and a designated caregiver (guardian).
Patients must have one of the following diagnosed medical conditions to be eligible:
Cancer, Glaucoma, HIV/AIDS, Tourette syndrome, Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Seizures, including those characteristic of epilepsy, Severe and persistent muscle spasms, including those characteristic of multiple sclerosis, Inflammatory bowel disease, including Crohn’s disease, Terminal illness, with a probable life expectancy of less than one year, Intractable pain, Post-traumatic stress disorder, Autism spectrum disorder, Obstructive sleep apnea, Alzheimer’s disease, Chronic pain, Sickle cell disease, Chronic motor or vocal tic disorder
Before you schedule an appointment, make sure that you have a formal diagnosis of your health condition. Also, if you were diagnosed 1-2 years ago, have your primary care provider update your medical diagnosis in your records.
Patients are also required to fill out a Patient Acknowledgement Form [pdf]. This must be signed and provided to the doctor who completes the medical cannabis health evaluation.
Currently in Minnesota, patients with a medical card can only buy vape oils, creams or topical lotions, and cannabis-infused lozenges or mints. The new amendments would make smokable flower legal in Minnesota. That would also make medical cannabis less expensive for patients.
Patients must be at least eighteen (18) years of age or older at the time of application and the physician evaluation.
When you undergo your health evaluation, the physician will need a valid and private email address for you. That will allow the doctor to do the first part of the registration process, so that you get email notifications from the Minnesota Medical Cannabis Program.
Yes. If your child has one or more than one of the qualifying health conditions you can apply to register them with the Minnesota Department of Health (DOH). Minors under the age of eighteen (18) years must have a designated caregiver.
The only people who can become a designated medical cannabis caregiver in Minnesota, are the legal guardian(s) of a child. Part of the application process for parents or guardians is to provide proof of birth certificate or adoption, and other types of documentation proving direct guardianship.
The caregiver will also be required to provide contact information with proof of address, telephone number, and government-issued photo identification. Guardians are required to provide proof of their identity when they are picking up an order of therapeutic cannabis products for their child.
Both patients and caregivers are required to renew their medical cards before they expire. If you fail to renew your card before the expiration date, you will not have a valid Minnesota MMJ registry. And that means a few problems for patients and caregivers.
Without being successfully registered, patients or caregivers are not able to visit a dispensary. They cannot purchase medical cannabis products. Furthermore, they are not protected legally against arrest for possession or use of cannabis.
It is very important to renew your Minnesota medical card on time every year. This requires scheduling an appointment with a certified practitioner for an annual review. A mandatory health check to make sure that medical cannabis is still a safe treatment option for you, since healthcare conditions change.
There is an annual fee to see the physician for the health evaluation and a renewal fee which can be paid online. Both are required for the Minnesota medical cannabis annual re-enrollment.
Since Minnesota does not issue a medical cannabis card, the good news is that you can’t lose it. The documentation you need to provide to pick up your prescription from a provider location is available through the state’s patient portal.
You must show a photo ID every time you pick up your cannabis products from your designated provider location.
Patients who are registered in the statewide medical cannabis program cannot visit a retail dispensary in Minnesota. Instead they visit a licensed location called a Cannabis Patient Center. The CPCs function like a standard pharmacy, filling prescriptions received from doctors.
Registered patients may legally possess up to a thirty-day supply of cannabis products (less than 1.5 ounces). The dosage or potency of the cannabis is determined by the pharmacist and physician, specific to the patient’s needs.
Medical marijuana became legal to use in Minnesota in 2014. Minnesota was the 22nd state to legalize cannabis for qualified patients.
While the Minnesota medical cannabis program remains one of the most restrictive in America, legalization required voter support. Lawmakers in Minnesota were deadlocked about legalizing medical marijuana for a long time.
The State of Minnesota has a legalized medical marijuana program, which allows patients to receive a medical marijuana recommendation from a certified physician, and apply for a state-issued Minnesota Medical Marijuana Card, permitting the patient to purchase marijuana for medicinal use, as per Minnesota state guidelines.
Since the Minnesota medical marijuana program is still changing their laws and new Minnesota medical marijuana laws are being enacted on a regular basis, please be sure to visit our site frequently to get the most updated laws as it pertains to the Minnesota medical marijuana program. Please click a corresponding link to find out more about Minnesota’s Medical Marijuana Program. We have compiled the following Minnesota medical marijuana index of information to serve as a medical library to our users for legal reference of Minnesota’s laws, guidelines and program details regarding medical cannabis use in Minnesota.
Please note: In order to become a legal medical marijuana patient you must first have a qualifying condition as outlined by the department of health services and/or department of justice. For a comprehensive list of Minnesota’s qualifying medical marijuana conditions, please visit our qualifying conditions section located on the top of our menu under “legal states”.