Medical marijuana was legalized in Ohio when it was signed into law by then-Gov. John Kasich in June 2016.
The law authorizes the use of medical marijuana for treatment of certain qualifying conditions, subject to a physician’s recommendation, and establishes the state’s Medical Marijuana Control Program (MMCP).
Medical marijuana can be dispensed as oils, tinctures, plant material, edibles, and patches. Smokable marijuana is prohibited, but vaporization is allowed.
The law allows for the possession of a maximum 90-day supply, though this is yet to be specified by the MMCP.
The law stipulates that no marijuana dispensary can operate within 500 feet of a school, church, public library, or public playground. Local governments also retain the power to ban or restrict cultivators, processors, and dispensaries.
Home cultivation of cannabis is not allowed, though provisions in the law provide limited legal protections for qualifying patients who obtain marijuana from outside Ohio prior to the operation of state-licensed dispensaries.
Medical marijuana can be recommended for any of the following medical conditions:
- Acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS)
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (Lou Gehrig’s disease)
- Anxiety (granted preliminary approval only)
- Autism Spectrum disorder (granted preliminary approval only)
- Chronic traumatic encephalopathy
- Crohn’s disease
- Epilepsy or other seizure disorders
- Hepatitis C
- Inflammatory bowel disease
- Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
- Pain that is either of the following nature: (i) Chronic and severe; or (ii) Intractable
- Parkinson’s disease
- Positive status for HIV
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Sickle cell anemia
- Spinal cord disease or injury
- Tourette’s syndrome
- Traumatic brain injury
- Ulcerative colitis
How to Apply for a Medical Marijuana Card in Ohio
To register as a medical marijuana patient with the MMCP, you must:
- Be a resident of Ohio
- Be diagnosed with a qualifying condition by a physician with a Certificate to Recommend from the State Medical Board.
- Register with the Ohio Board of Pharmacy
- Establish and maintain a bona fide physician-patient relationship
Prospective patients may nominate up to two caregivers to obtain and deliver medical marijuana on their behalf. Caregivers must also be Ohio residents, aged 18 years or older, and register with the Ohio Board of Pharmacy.
There is a patient registry fee of $50. For caregivers, this is $25, while veterans receive a 50 percent discount.
Patients under the age of 18 are required to have a parent or legal guardian act as their caregiver.
Medical marijuana registry ID cards are valid for one year. Renewal requires payment of $50.
Where You Can Buy It
State-licensed dispensaries are yet to become operational, with the state having missed its deadline of September 2018. There are limited legal protections for qualifying patients who obtain marijuana from outside Ohio prior to the operation of state-licensed dispensaries.
There are currently no reciprocal agreements in place, meaning Ohio does not recognize medical marijuana registry cards issued in other states.