If you live in Illinois, you can apply for a medical marijuana card to access cannabis to treat your underlying medical condition. Having a MMJ card provides a lot of significant benefits, even in a recreational state like Illinois. Medical marijuana cardholders get access to more products, higher quantities, and lower prices.
Do I qualify for a medical marijuana card?
In 2013, Illinois launched the Medical Marijuana Patient Registry Program to provide access to cannabis for residents who meet certain underlying conditions. To qualify for a medical card in Illinois you must:
- Live in Illinois with proof of residency
- Be 18+ years old (younger applicants must have an adult caregiver apply)
- Have an underlying medical condition
- Be certified by a licensed Physician
What are the qualifying medical conditions?
You can find a complete list of qualifying medical conditions on the Illinois Department of Public Health’s website. Here are a few of the most common conditions:
- Chronic Pain
- Chron’s disease
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- Residual limb pain
- Ulcerative colitis
Apply for Your Medical Card
After you’ve determined your eligibility, it’s time to get started applying to get your medical marijuana card. The process itself is pretty straightforward and can be completed entirely online.
Step 1 – Get Certified by a Physician
Any person wishing to use cannabis to treat an underlying medical condition in Illinois needs to get approval from their doctor. Your doctor will discuss your condition with you and determine if it meets state qualification guidelines. It is important that you find a doctor who is knowledgeable about marijuana so that you receive adequate support and advice. Unfortunately, not all doctors are what is referred to as ‘weed friendly’.
Green Mind Physicians specializes in certifying patients for medical marijuana use. Our doctors believe in the science behind marijuana research and want eligible patients to benefit from the medicinal plant. In addition to certifying your condition, our doctors will answer any questions and concerns you have about marijuana use. Appointments are easy to make and easy to attend — everything happens over the computer or phone.
Once you find a doctor you believe will listen to you and offer adequate support in your medical marijuana journey, make an appointment! During the appointment, you will have a chance to ask any questions you have about marijuana use as it relates to your condition.
After your appointment, you will receive the completed Physician Certification Form needed for the next step.
Step 2 – Submit Your Application
Register for an account and complete the online patient application with the state of Illinois. Follow the instructions in the portal to submit your proof of residency, your Physician Certification Form, and the card fee.
The fee to register for a 1-year card is $100, 2-year is $200, and 3-year is $250. You can check the Illinois Depart of Public Health for an updated fee table and information on discounts. Some residents are eligible for 50% off registration fees.
You will need to select a specific medical marijuana dispensary on your application. This will allow you to shop at a registered dispensary and avoid the adult-use tax on recreational marijuana. To find a dispensary near you and read reviews, you can check websites like Leafly or Weedmaps.
Don’t worry if you aren’t exactly sure where you want to shop. If you change your mind later, it is easy to log back into your online account and request a dispensary change.
Finally, you will need to get photos taken for your new card! These pictures can be taken at any pharmacy, grocery store, or post office offering a passport photo service. You’ll need two 2×2 color passport photos to complete your application.
Step 3 – Get Your Medical Card
Once your application to the Medical Marijuana Registry is approved, you’ll receive a temporary card that allows you access to your specified dispensary after 24 hours! You should print this temporary card and carry it with you to the shop. Be sure to check the dispensary for updates on Covid restrictions, as well as any perks for medical cardholders — many shops host ‘mmj patients only’ hours!
If you were certified by a doctor at Green Mind Physicians, you also have access to a lifetime of marijuana support. Purchasing cannabis can be an intimidating experience for some patients, but we believe it doesn’t have to be. We will meet with you to discuss your condition and how to get the most benefit from medical marijuana.
These consultations can easily be booked on our appointment page and will always be free for Green Mind patients.
Step 4 – Rejoice!
You are now registered to purchase medical marijuana in Illinois and are entitled to all the benefits that come with your new medical card:
- Avoid adult-use taxes
- More products, more stock
- Purchase larger quantities at a time
- Exclusive dispensary hours and priority access
- Grow your own!
- State reciprocity programs
Are you ready to start your medical marijuana journey? Head over to our appointments page to schedule a time to talk to one of our licensed physicians.