Cannabis 101 | Medical Marijuana FAQ's
Cannabis has been used as a medicine for thousands of years. Despite its medicinal effects, it had been highly taxed and made illegal in the United States during the last century. It is currently illegal to possess cannabis, even as medicine, under federal law. As a medicine, Cannabis has minimal side effects, is not physically addictive, and there have been no reported fatalities regarding its use. It has no known adverse effect on the liver, kidneys or GI tract, and no allergic reactions have been reported. Its recognized contraindications are extremely limited.
The two prevalent Cannabis species grown in the United States are Cannabis Sativa and Cannabis Indica. Sativas typically have a stimulating and alerting effect while Indicas typically provide a “couch lock” effect. As most strains are bred as a blend of Indica and Sativa species, and contain other natural cannabinoids and terpenes that can influence the effects of a given strain, this general rule may not always be the case.
MEDICAL CANNABIS METHODS OF ADMINISTRATION
TINCTURES: Cannabis oils diluted with ethanol, glycerin, various oils, and water as drops
OILS INFUSED WITH CANNABIS: Olive oil, Ghee (butter), other
FULL EXTRACT CANNABIS OILS: Processing should use supercritical CO2 for extraction to avoid impurities contained in other solvents
SUPPOSITORIES: Cannabis oil blended with polyethylene glycol (PEG), cocoa butter or other oils
SALVES: Cannabis oils blended with other oils
NON-OIL ORAL ADMINISTRATION: Capsules, candies, edibles, and other oral preparations
FLOWER: Bud, Kif, Hashish (the smoking of flower is not permitted under Florida law)
PHARMACOLOGIC EFFECTS OF CANNABINOIDS
- Antibacterial (MRSA)
- Anti-Host vs. Graft
- UV light reducing
- ↓ GI Motility
- ↓ GI Secretions
- ↓ Stomach acid
- ↓ Acid Reflux
- ↑ Sleep Induction
- * Modulates immune responses without compromising efficacy of the immune system
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:
Q: Isn’t marijuana classified as a Schedule I drug?
A: Yes. Despite being legal in 30 states, the federal government has classified marijuana, even medical marijuana, as a Schedule I Controlled Substance. Even though it may be legal at the state level, it is illegal to grow, possess or sell marijuana under federal law. Despite its status of marijuana as a Schedule I Controlled Substance, the US Congress has prohibited the US Justice Department from spending money or other resources towards the enforcement of federal laws prohibiting medical marijuana cultivation, possession and sales in those states where such activities are legal and the participants are complying with their state law. Therefore, compliance with your state law is essential.
Q: Which physicians are allowed to recommend the use of medical cannabis?
A: Only Qualified Physicians can recommend the use of medical marijuana to their patients. Qualified Physicians are persons holding an active, unrestricted license as an allopathic or osteopathic physician who have complied with Florida’s statutory education requirements.
Q: How do I become a Qualified Patient?
A: In order to qualify for the use of medical cannabis, you must be a Florida full time or seasonal resident, suffer from one or more qualified conditions, have your condition certified by a Florida physician qualified to make medical cannabis recommendations, enter your information in the state’s Medical Marijuana Use Registry, and receive your Medical Marijuana ID Card. Our office can assist you at each stage of the process.
Q: What is a seasonal Florida resident?
A: A seasonal resident resides in Florida for a period of at least 31 consecutive days in a calendar year, maintains a temporary residence in Florida, returns to his or her jurisdiction of permanent residence at lease one time during each calendar year, and is registered to vote or pay income tax in another jurisdiction.
Q: What are the state’s qualifying conditions?
A: Patients in Florida may treat the following conditions with medical cannabis: i) Cancer; ii) Epilepsy; iii) Glaucoma; iv) Positive status for HIV; v) AIDS; vi) PTSD; vii) ALS; viii) Crohn's disease; ix) Parkinson's disease; x) MS; xi) Other medical conditions of the same kind or class as or comparable to those described above; xii) Any terminal condition; or xiii) Chronic non-malignant pain. You can learn more HERE.
Q: What if I do not suffer from one of the conditions listed above?
A: Florida patients may use medical cannabis to treat “Other Medical Conditions of the Same Kind or Class as or Comparable to” the conditions listed above. Many chronic health conditions have similarities to the conditions specifically listed above. Our certified physicians will confirm that you suffer from any of these additional conditions and recommend your use of medical cannabis if they believe that the use of medical cannabis can provide you with relief and the benefits of its use outweigh any potential health risks to you. Please contact us to pre-qualify your medical condition.
Q: If I have my Medical Marijuana ID Card may I smoke cannabis flower or use product purchased on the black market?
A: No. Even if you have your Medical Marijuana ID Card, Florida law currently prohibits the smoking of cannabis flower or consuming medical marijuana from a source other than a licensed Medical Marijuana Treatment Center.
Q: What if I am pregnant?
A: If you are pregnant you may only receive a recommendation for low-THC cannabis, which contains 0.8 percent or less of THC and more than 10% of CBD, weight for weight.
Q: How much of a supply can my physician recommend and how often do I need to see my physician before I can receive a new certification?
A: You may not receive a certification providing for a supply covering more than three 70-day periods, and must be re-evaluated by your physician every 210 days before you can receive a new certification
Q: May I change my Qualified Physician?
A: Yes, you may change your Qualified Physician at any time. We can help you deactivate your existing physician.
Q: What is a Caregiver?
A: A Caregiver is a Florida resident who agrees to assist you with your use of medical cannabis, has a caregiver identification card, and otherwise meets all statutory requirements. Caregivers may not receive any compensation from you other than the reimbursement of their reasonable expenses.
*PATIENTS SHOULD CONSULT WITH THEIR ATTORNEYS TO SEE HOW FLORIDA’S MEDICAL CANNABIS LAWS RELATE TO THEM*
I Would like to Speak to a Cannabis Doctor - What Next?
Give us a call to set up your consulation with our certified medical cannabis doctors! We are seeing patients by appointment afer you have pre-qualified.
We require that you provide us with your medical records verifying your qualifying conditions. Having these at your initial appointment will assit with the certification of your conidtion. If you dont have them we can help you get them from your diagnosing physician. You can view the needed forms HERE.