Why You'll Still Need a Medical Recommendation After Jan. 1

by HelloMD

As some of you may know, most cities and counties won’t be ready to sell recreational cannabis by Jan 1., and many locales may not be ready for some time—best estimates range anywhere from six to 18 months. There’s a lot of confusion surrounding legalization, especially regarding taxes and medical cards. We’ve gathered a few key points to help you stay informed:

  • A medical marijuana recommendation (MMR) is given to you by a doctor and is always needed to purchase medical cannabis. If you’ve used our telehealth services, this is the document you’re able to print out immediately following your doctor consultation.

  • The state of California is issuing cards, or MMICs, through its Medical Marijuana Identification Card Program. An MMIC offers holders a tax discount on medical cannabis and can only be obtained by those who already have an MMR. You do NOT need an MMIC to purchase medical cannabis from a dispensary.

  • All MMRs from HelloMD are valid through the printed date—you do NOT need a new MMR starting Jan. 1.

  • A number of cities and counties are only allowing medical sales—and even in cities and counties that do allow recreational sales, there will be dispensaries that only have medical licenses. To purchase cannabis in cities, counties and dispensaries that only permit medical sales, you will need an MMR.

  • MMRs allow you to purchase more cannabis than is normally allowed for recreational users.

  • Those with MMRs are allowed to possess 8 oz of flower vs. 1 oz of flower for those without a recommendation.
  • Non-edible cannabis products, such as tinctures, concentrates, and topicals, can contain up to 1,000 mg of THC per package, while products for MMR holders can contain 2,000 mg.
  • MMRs have the added benefit of letting you consult with a doctor—instead of a budtender—on what products are best for you.

If you consistently rely on cannabis to address health issues, getting an MMR ensures that you’ll have steady access to marijuana as California slowly transitions to legalization in 2018—so if you don’t have an MMR, get one now.