How to Get a Medical Marijuana Card in Florida

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OK, we're gonna give it to you straight: Getting a medical marijuana card in Florida can take several weeks and run you $200 to $300 before your ID card arrives in the mail. The good news is, once you've obtained your doctor's referral and your medical marijuana-use registry application has been approved, you can pretty much start shopping for your THC right away. Clear the relatively uncomplicated hurdles outlined below, and you'll be enjoying your legally purchased pot in no time.

Here's how to get a medical marijuana card in Miami as of February 2019:

Step 1: Find a doctor. You'll need a signed physician's statement from a medical marijuana doctor. That shouldn't be hard, since there are currently around 270 doctors licensed to prescribe THC in Miami-Dade. Check here for a complete list of qualified physicians and their contact information.

  • Did you know? Florida physicians must pay $250 for a mandatory two-hour course and earn a passing score of at least 80 percent every two years to certify patient eligibility and write referrals or recommendations for medical marijuana (marijuana "prescriptions" are still technically illegal).

Step 2: Go to your consultation. You and your physician will discuss your medical history and treatment options, including dosage. Some common qualifying medical conditions include cancer, seizures, and posttraumatic stress. Check here for a list of some other qualifying conditions. Your doctor will then write your recommendation, enter your name and information into the Florida Marijuana Use Registry, and provide you with your patient ID number, which you'll use to apply for your required ID card. Be sure to provide your email address to receive important updates.

  • Did you know? Prices vary, but consultations typically cost around $150 per visit. Doctors can order no more than three 70-day supplies per written recommendation. Recommendation renewals require a consultation each time. Insurance does not cover consultations, nor can you pay with credit cards.

Step 3: Apply online. Once you've received your doctor's recommendation and patient ID number, completing the online application for your card is pretty straightforward. The current application processing fee is $75, and online payments take five business days to process. After payment has posted, it can be another five days before your application is approved.

  • Did you know? You don't need the physical card to begin shopping. Once your ID card application has been approved, you'll receive a temporary identification via email to use to fill your order until your card arrives.

That's it! We've already outlined where you can purchase medical marijuana in South Florida. Here are a couple of other items you should know:

  • To maintain an active medical-marijuana-use registry identification card, patients or caregivers must submit a renewal application, along with the application fee and any required accompanying documents, to the Department of Health 45 days before the card's expiration date. Cards expire one year after approval.

  • Patients we interviewed said their first recommendation required only one doctor's visit lasting around one and a half hours. Some reported receiving their temporary ID by email as soon as eight days after their first consultation. Others said it took a month from start to finish.

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