It has been more than three years since West Virginia passed its medical marijuana bill into law, but the Office of Medical Cannabis is still not issuing cards to prospective patients. That may change very soon, though, as the program’s director, Jason Frame, recently confirmed that growers, processors, and dispensaries are being approved for licensure as we speak. If all goes according to plan, we can expect to see the program fully underway by the spring of 2021.
Dispensaries and Grow Facilities Are On Track
It’s currently anticipated that all dispensary and grower applications will be finalized by the end of August. The Office of Medical Cannabis is hard at work reviewing applications, some of which are nearly 1,000 pages long.
In the end, the department is authorized to approve licenses for 10 growers, 10 processors, and 100 dispensaries throughout the state. The state has nearly 200 dispensary applications to review, as well as 40 grower applications and 40 processor applications.
The department is also encouraging new applications for testing labs, as they have only approved one license so far—for Microbac Laboratories in Charleston.
If applications are approved by the end of summer, the next step is for businesses to set up their operations in accordance with the law. The first grow cycle should take approximately 90 days, after which dispensaries will be able to open their doors. If there are no further hiccups, a spring launch seems entirely reasonable.
Physicians Can Now Apply for Medical Marijuana Certification
Physicians in West Virginia must apply for certification in order to prescribe medical marijuana to patients. Each physician must complete a four-hour training course and pay the required $189 fee.
Registered physicians will be able to recommend cannabis for patients with a qualifying condition like cancer, chronic pain, MS, epilepsy, or Crohn’s disease.
Because all patients must have a physician’s recommendation in order to access medical marijuana in West Virginia, there exists an immediate need for more physicians to join the program. Green Health Docs has licensed physicians in West Virginia who are registered with the program, so prospective patients can contact us to schedule an appointment and obtain their West Virginia medical marijuana card.
Now Is the Time for Patients to Get Certified
If you speak with a physician and obtain your recommendation today, you’ll be first in line to register for your card when the program is active. Your certification is good for one full year, so it should be valid when the program officially launches.
If you’d like to get started, you can schedule an appointment directly through our website using the online scheduling feature or by calling us at 1-877-242-0362. You’ll need your valid West Virginia ID, and you should come prepared with any medical records confirming that you have a qualifying condition. Get started today.