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Legal medical cannabis could reach Mississippi by the end of October

Patient advocates are gearing up for a launch in late 2022 with nearly 120 dispensaries licensed and ready to open.

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Medical cannabis patients in Mississippi can purchase from state-licensed dispensaries as early as next month.

So, what is the schedule? Melvin Robinson, executive director of the Mississippi Cannabis Trade Association, says medical cannabis could be available in Mississippi by the end of October.

“The licensing started in June, so we have a lot of people who have gone out of their way to make sure we can get products to patients as quickly as possible,” Robinson said. Podcast The Other Side. “I wouldn’t be surprised at all if you can go to a dispensary and buy products on October 31,” he added.

119 licenses have been issued to the dispensary so far, according to state record. Mississippi begins reviewing App Store apps in july. The state patient portal received about 1,800 applicants when it first opened in June. But advocates expect that number to rise as residents realize how quickly they can use their medical cards.

Earlier this week, the Mississippi Cannabis Patients Alliance (MCPA) held first patient seminar. The event introduced patients to the new regulations and products available.

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The symposium involved hundreds of patients, caregivers, practitioners, dispensaries, farmers and advocates. Participants learned how to obtain medical certifications in Mississippi, gained insight into medical conditions that qualify for medical cannabis, and even discussed best practices for the safe storage of medical cannabis.

Here’s how Mississippi legalized medical cannabis

Mississippi Senator Kevin Blackwell (R-Southaven) shows a bag of cannabis to fellow lawmakers while discussing Mississippi’s medical cannabis law in the Senate Chamber of the Capitol on Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis)

Lawmakers first approved Senate Bill 2095, and Mississippi Medical Cannabis Law On January 26, 2022 b Majority support from the legislature. After Governor Tate Reeves Sign the law A week later, the Magnolia State began building a medical marijuana program.

“There is no doubt that there are individuals in our state who could do much better if they were given prescription doses of cannabis,” Gov. Reeves said. He wrote on Twitter after signing. “There are also people who really want a recreational marijuana program that can lead to more people smoking and fewer people working, with all the societal and family ills that that causes,” the governor added.

Ten months later, the tide is turning, and medicinal cannabis products can reach Mississippi dispensaries Early in October. The state has already collected 6 million dollars in revenue Of the licensing fees that companies like Mockingbird and kudzu They were required to pay in order to participate in medical sales. mocking-bird He reportedly invested $30 million To open a 163,000-square-foot plant for growth and manufacturing.

A two-year effort to help patients

The state’s medical marijuana effort began in November 2020, when Mississippi voters created and approved a citizen-led suffrage initiative called Action Initiative No. 65. The measure sought to amend the Mississippi Constitution to allow the establishment of a statewide medical cannabis program.

Despite overwhelming support for the initiative, the Mississippi Supreme Court overturned Conduct Initiative 65 in May 2021, on the grounds that the state election law governing voter ballot initiatives is outdated and unenforceable. That’s water under the bridge now.

Governor Reeves said he would call a special hearing to address the matter in September 2021, but that never happened. In January this year, a landslide vote In the Senate (47-5) it was revealed that the legislatures had sufficient power to override the impending veto of Governor Reeves. conservative Signed SB 2095 Within weeks, visibly swayed by the overwhelming support for the bill from local lawmakers and advocates.

On June 1, 2022, the Mississippi legislature announced the opening of the application process for individuals seeking to enroll in the state’s medical cannabis program as a patient, medical practitioner, facility, and transportation service. Mississippi Department of Health website It hosts applications for all eligible patients with physician approval, as well as growers, processors, and testing facilities.

Before applying, applicants must read Complete Mississippi Medical Cannabis Law To understand the program’s regulations, you must complete a background check and be fingerprinted. Here’s how to get started.

How to Apply for a Medical Marijuana Card in Mississippi

The Mississippi Medical Cannabis Act lists about 20 medical conditions and class of conditions that qualify residents for a medical cannabis card in the state.

  • cancer
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Huntington’s disease
  • muscle atrophy
  • glaucoma
  • spastic quadriplegia
  • HIV positive status
  • Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS)
  • Lever Inflammation
  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)
  • Crohn’s disease
  • ulcerative colitis
  • Sickle cell anemia
  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • provoke dementia
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Autism
  • Pain resistant to appropriate opioid treatment
  • Diabetic/peripheral neuropathy
  • Spinal cord disease or severe injury
  • cachexia or wasting syndrome
  • chronic pain
  • Severe or intractable nausea
  • seizures
  • Severe and persistent muscle spasms including, but not limited to, those characteristic of multiple sclerosis

A full list of steps to apply as a patient is available over here.

The cards will be valid for 12 months, and will be available to patients for a non-refundable fee of $25. This fee will be waived for veterans and early disabled. Medicare patients will pay a reduced fee of $15 per card. The card will allow patients to purchase up to 21 grams per week and 84 grams per month. That’s roughly 3 ounces per month.

How to apply for a medical marijuana facility license

Facilities licenses include cultivation, processing, and testing operations. All facility applications can be found at the Mississippi Department of Health Regulations page. Prospective applicants must register through the online portal of the Ministry of Health and register in Office of the Mississippi Secretary of State.

In addition to mandatory background checks and application fees, applicants must submit the size, location, and staffing plans of their facility. Completed applications will receive a decision within 30 days.

How to Apply for a Medical Marijuana Dispensary License

Potential dispensaries should seek a license through Mississippi Revenue Department. Applicants must first register for a Mississippi sales tax account (and obtain a sales tax permit via TAP) and the Mississippi Secretary of State.

Applicants must also pay and submit a license fee All information requiredaccording to the Mississippi Division of Revenue Dispensary application site. This includes the operating plan, work permit, site plans, and proof of lease. Completed applications will receive a decision within 30 days.

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