1How do I qualify for medical marijuana?
In Florida there are 12 diagnoses that are qualifying. These include: Epilepsy, Multiple Sclerosis, HIV, AIDS, Cancer, Parkinson’s Disease, Crohn’s Disease, PTSD, Glaucoma, ALS, Terminal Illness, and Chronic non-Malignant Pain that arises from one of the above. The final condition is any condition that the prescriber feels is similar to one of the above and for which there is justification for using cannabis.
2How do I get started?
3How much will it cost?
When you speak with our staff they will explain our fees. Essentially we charge for an initial consult that includes the certification and then a free follow-up appointment to adjust therapy as indicated. Once you are stable on your dose, we see you every 6 months. The monthly cost of medical marijuana depends on how much you need and what delivery system you choose. It is common to spend between $100-$200 per month for it.
4Do I buy marijuana from you?
NO. We do not keep any marijuana at our office and we are not a dispensary. Once you obtain your Medical Marijuana Card, you call us to place the order in the computer. From there you are free to go to any dispensary in the state of Florida, either in person or virtually, to purchase your marijuana. You can go to more than one dispensary to try different types of marijuana.
5Is this covered by insurance?
NO. Because the federal law labels marijuana as a Schedule l drug, it is federally illegal. However, it is legal in this state for medicinal purposes. Insurance companies follow federal guidelines so they do not pay for either the consult or the marijuana.
6Will I get high from it?
Marijuana is a plant that is comprised of both psychoactive and non- psychoactive elements. We will order you what you need for your diagnosis. We try not to make patients high except in certain circumstances. The mantra of using medical cannabis is “start low and go slow” because that is the way to figure out exactly how much each patient requires.
7Can I travel with my medical marijuana?
Provided that you stay in the state of Florida and carry your medical marijuana card with you, it is legal to travel anywhere in the state with your medical marijuana. It is illegal to travel to other states or overseas with it, even if you have a card.
8Do I have to smoke it?
NO. Almost all medical marijuana is either taken as a drop under the tongue, a vaporization pen, a cream or a capsule.
9Where can I read more about marijuana?
we suggest the website called www. leafly.com as a resource but there are many books, articles and websites devoted to this subject.
10What if it does not work for me?
When we treat, we aim to alleviate your problem. If we maximize your dose and you start getting too high with inadequate improvement in your problem, then we must reconsider. If you feel at any time that you do not want to continue, then you are free to stop.
11What are the common side effects of medical marijuana?
Some patients find that they feel impaired or “high” and do not like it. Some patients with high CBD doses feel so relaxed that they get sleepy. Those with high THC doses may feel anxious. Dry mouth and red eyes are not uncommon.
12What do I do if I get uncomfortably high?
We suggest drinking chamomile tea with lemon and trying to distract yourself with relaxing activities like watching a movie or taking a nap or a walk in the fresh air. Remember, the feeling will pass. Being too high is a feeling that is scary for many people, but it will go away on its own.
13How dangerous is medical marijuana?
Nobody has ever died of a medical marijuana overdose and it is one of the safest substances to use. However, mixing marijuana and other drugs or alcohol is not advised. Check with us or your regular doctor about possible drug-drug interactions with other medications you are taking.
14Will I be able to stop my pain medications? my antidepressants? My sleeping pills?
The goal of medical marijuana is to help you to find alternative ways to treat your medical issues. Virtually all of our patients are able to start weaning down on the dose of their narcotics, sleeping pills, and antidepressants. Our staff will help to guide you. It is a slow process. Many of our patients remain on some of their original medications, but far less than before medical marijuana.
15How often do I need to renew my medical marijuana card?
You are required to renew your card once a year. The expiration date is on the front of your card. You should put a calendar reminder in at least 30-45 days in advance. If you fail to re-apply on time, you will need to start the process over from the beginning.