We will show you this article exactly how to apply for a medical cannabis card in Arkansas. Arkansas voters passed Amendment 98, also known as the Arkansas Medical Marijuana Act, in November 2016. The constitutional amendment allows qualifying patients to purchase and use medical marijuana from a licensed retailer. Arkansas’ first dispensary, however, wasn’t open until May 11, 2019. A small network of dispensaries has provided thousands of patients with the medicine they need. Here’s how you can apply for a medical marijuana card in Arkansas’ medical marijuana program.
Benefits of a Medical Marijuana Card in Arkansas
Arkansas was the 33rd state to legalize medical marijuana. Recreational marijuana use, sale, or possession is illegal. In fact, Arkansas has one of the harshest possession laws in the nation. A valid medical card enables you to obtain legal marijuana products such as whole flower buds and edibles. Having a range of potent and safe products ensures you get the highest quality medicine. A medical marijuana card also extends your rights and protections to other states in the nation that offer reciprocity laws.
In order to apply for a medical marijuana card in the state of Arkansas, you must first be an Arkansas resident with a qualifying condition and a recent doctor’s certification. Unfortunately, members of the Arkansas National Guard and U.S. Military are prohibited from getting a registry card. In order to get a physician’s certification, you must find a licensed doctor in Arkansas who is willing to complete and sign the patient certification.
The certification confirms that the physician conducted an in-person patient assessment. Arkansas has a list of qualifying conditions, but patients can petition to add a new one. Arkansas residents must have one or more of the following qualifying conditions to register for the medical cannabis program:
- Hepatitis C
- Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)
- Tourette’s syndrome
- Crohn’s disease
- Ulcerative colitis
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Severe arthritis
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Cachexia or wasting syndrome
- Peripheral neuropathy
- Intractable pain that has not responded to ordinary medications, treatment, or surgical measures for more than six months
- Severe nausea
- Seizures including those characteristic of epilepsy
- Severe and persistent muscle spasms including those characteristic of multiple sclerosis
- Any other medical condition or its treatment approved by the Department of Health
Medical Card Application Process in Arkansas
Once you’ve received the completed physician’s certification form, you can complete your medical card application online or by mail. Applications can take up to 14 days to process. To get started with your application, create an account to register as a new patient. You’ll need to submit a valid email address and create a password. The Department of Health will send you a confirmation email to set-up your account.
How to Apply for a Medical Cannabis Card in Arkansas
Arkansas’ patient application requires you to submit your social security number, a copy of your state ID, the physician certification, and a non-refundable $50 application fee. Online applications are preferred, but you can download the form or request one to be mailed to you by calling 1-833-214-8619. Forms can be submitted to the following address:
Arizona Department of Health
Medical Marijuana Section
4815 West Markham Slot 50
Little Rock, AR 72205
Once approved you can choose to print your medical marijuana card or receive it by mail. The medical card will be valid for up to one year from issuance. Physicians can set lower term limits on the certification form.
Keep in mind, you must apply for a medical card within 30 days of receiving the physician certification. If you fail to submit it within 30 days of issuance, you will have to receive another physician certification. This is how to apply for a medical cannabis card in Arkansas.
When you apply for an Arkansas medical marijuana card, you must pay a $50 debit or credit card payment. American Express cards are not accepted. The $50 fee is non-refundable. If your registry card is lost or stolen, you can print another card by logging into your account. If you submitted the form by mail, you can send a change of address/lost card form to receive a replacement.
All lost or stolen cards will be voided.
Buying and Growing Medical Marijuana
Arkansas issued 32 dispensary licenses, but only ten are open (as of October 2019). Qualifying patients and caregivers can purchase up to 2.5 ounces of cannabis from a licensed retailer every 14 days. Customers are able to buy a variety of cannabis and cannabis-derived products. Medical cardholders can buy dry flower, concentrates, edibles, and topicals. Cannabis home cultivation is prohibited.
In Arkansas, a caregiver is “a person who is selected by a qualifying patient as the person authorized, on the qualifying patient’s behalf, to possess, obtain from a certified medical marijuana dispensary, dispense and assist in the administration of medical marijuana.”
Caregivers are able to serve more than one patient but must submit a separate application and fee for each patient.
Caregivers must be 21 years of age or older, have not been convicted of an excluded felony offense, and be an Arkansas resident. Parents or legal guardians serving a minor with a qualifying condition are not required to go through a criminal history check. Caregivers must pay a $37 fee to complete the criminal history check.
Out-of-state patients with a valid medical card can complete a visiting patient application form. Visitors must pay the non-refundable $50 application fee. If approved, visitors can purchase medical marijuana in the state for a 30-day period.
Keep that in mind if you are looking into how to apply for a medical cannabis card in Arkansas.
Arkansas’ medical marijuana program has been a strong revenue generator for the state, earning it $12.35 million in its first five months of operation. Arkansas lawmakers are working to expand medical marijuana access to patients across the state. Arkansas medical marijuana cards are not difficult to acquire if you suffer from one of the qualifying conditions.
Cannabis Training Arkansas
If you want to learn more about becoming a medical marijuana patient and using the plant in a safe manner, enroll in Cannabis Training University marijuana certification program. Cannabis Training University is the top cannabis training school online.