Medical Cannabis Evaluations

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***NOTE: APPLICABLE ONLY TO RESIDENTS OF NEW MEXICO*** 

(Information for this section has been obtained from the NMDOH website; see below)

As of 2018, 28 states and Washington, D.C. have passed a state law allowing for medical cannabis use. New Mexico became the 12th state to allow medical cannabis, creating the Medical Cannabis Program (MCP) under the Lynn and Erin Compassionate Use Act in 2007 (Senate Bill 523). The purpose of this Act is to allow the beneficial use of medical cannabis in a regulated system for alleviating symptoms caused by debilitating medical conditions and their medical treatments.

The Department provides Registry Identification Cards for Qualifying Patients. Additionally, a Primary Caregiver (PC) may be designated by the Qualified Patient (QP) to take responsibility for managing the well-being of the QP in the use of medical cannabis. A Qualified Patient may also obtain a Personal Production License (PPL) to grow medical cannabis for personal use. Based on Medical Cannabis Program patient statistics, as of December 2018, New Mexico has 67,574 active patients.

In accordance with requirements set forth by the NMDOH, I am licensed in New Mexico to prescribe and administer drugs that are subject to the Controlled Substance Act. Identified and accepted by the NMDOH as a Medical Cannabis Evaluating physician, it is my responsibility to interview a potential patient, obtaining detailed medical information, and to ascertain their qualification for the program. If deemed appropriate, and upon receipt of all the patient’s required paperwork, I then provide detailed documentation to support certification, sign the application and our office will send it by certified mail to the NMDOH for approval or denial.

Currently 21 qualifying medical conditions exist that will determine entry into the program. They are:

  1. Cancer
  2. Glaucoma
  3. Multiple Sclerosis
  4. Epilepsy/Seizure Disorder
  5. Spinal Cord Damage with Intractable Spasticity
  6. HIV/AIDS
  7. Painful peripheral neuropathy
  8. Intractable nausea/vomiting
  9. Severe anorexia/cachexia
  10. Hepatitis C infection currently receiving antiviral treatment
  11. Crohn’s disease
  12. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  13. Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis
  14. Severe Chronic Pain
  15. Hospice Care
  16. Inflammatory autoimmune-mediated arthritis
  17. Cervical dystonia
  18. Parkinson’s disease
  19. Huntington’s disease
  20. Ulcerative colitis
  21. Inclusion Body Myositis

In addition to completion of forms, the applicant is required to provide a current, valid copy of their New Mexico identification card or New Mexico’s Driver’s License; temporary ID’s are not accepted. Any available medical records or documentation to support diagnosis of the medical condition must also be provided.

NOTE: Any New Mexico resident may submit a petition requesting the addition of a new medical condition, treatment or disease to the Medical Cannabis Advisory Board; please see the link below for further information.

Each day, the Medical Cannabis Program receives hundreds of patient applications. The Program has up to 30 days from the date a complete application is received at the MCP office to approve or deny the application.  An additional five business days are allowed to process and issue the registry identification cards.  If approved, the patient receives a new patient packet with a patient registry card (yearly expiration), general program information, and LNPP contact information. If renewing, while it is the patient’s responsibility to submit an application at least 30 days before their card expires, the Program strongly recommends that applications be submitted 45 to 60 days before expiration to avoid problems obtaining or possessing medical cannabis.

The Center for Holistic Health is happy to work with you to obtain your initial Medical Cannabis card or to renew an established card. Upon initial contact with our office, an appointment will be made (approximately one hour) for us to review your history and determine what is necessary to complete your application. We will provide all necessary forms, assist you with their completion and facilitate retrieval of your medical records if necessary. Once you receive your card, our office can continue to provide supportive services with recommendations, suggestions and follow-up care if so desired.

FEES FOR CANNABIS EVALUATION:

$130: New patient applicant in our office (includes evaluation appointment)

$110: Senior & Veteran discount

$80-Renewal of application, previously established (Cash or checks accepted only; additional fee will apply for credit card use)

In the rare event an application is denied, if your information has changed or your card is lost, if you are a caregiver or wish to produce your own cannabis, we will also be available to assist in referrals to appropriate resources.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: The Department’s objective is to provide patients with safe access to safe medicine. The NMDOH administers the MCP in accordance with the Act while at the same time ensuring proper enforcement of any criminal laws for behavior that has been deemed illicit by the state.

What Enrollment Provides:
  • Possession of no more than 230 units (approximately eight ounces) over a three month period.
  • The right to purchase from a Licensed Non-Profit Producer
  • The right to possess any paraphernalia in connection with their use of medical cannabis
  • If the patient is not in possession of their card, they shall be given time to produce the card before arrest or criminal charges (Lynn and Erin Compassionate Use Act)
  • The right to apply for a personal production license (PPL), to allow enrollee to grow for personal use. If approved, patient can have up to sixteen plants, four mature (flowering) and 12 seedlings.
Prohibitions/Restrictions:
  • All minors must apply with a caregiver.
  • Caregiver requirements: federal criminal background check, NM ID, enrollment information and medical provider statement for need of caregiver. Incomplete applications remain pending until applicant submits required information.

Participation in the medical cannabis program by a qualified patient or primary caregiver does not relieve the qualified patient or primary caregiver from:

  1. Criminal prosecution or civil penalties for activities not authorized in this rule and act;
  2. Criminal prosecution or civil penalties for fraudulent representation to a law enforcement officer about the person’s participation in the program to avoid arrest or prosecution;
  3. Liability for damages or criminal prosecution arising out of the operation of a vehicle while under the influence of cannabis or cannabis-derived products; or
  4. Criminal prosecution or civil penalty for possession, distribution, transfer, or use of cannabis or a cannabis-derived product
    1. In a school bus or public vehicle;
    2. On school grounds or property;
    3. In the workplace of the qualified patient’s or primary caregiver’s employment;
    4. At a public park, recreation center, youth center, or other public place;
    5. To a person not approved by the department pursuant to this rule;
    6. Outside New Mexico or attempts to obtain or transport cannabis, or cannabis- derived products from outside New Mexico; or
    7. That exceeds the allotted amount of usable medical cannabis, or cannabis-derived products. NMAC 7.34.3.15

FURTHER INFORMATION MAY BE OBTAINED ON THE NMDOH MEDICAL CANNABIS PROGRAM WEBSITE:
https://nmhealth.org/about/mcp/svcs/info/

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