The Minnesota Medical Marijuana Act listed the approved debilitating conditions as:
Glaucoma : Glaucoma affects the nerves around the eyes and causes pain to the individual. Marijuana helps ease the pain, provides relief to the patient, and helps repair the damages done to the nerves.
Cancer: Minnesota permits the use of medical marijuana to manage cancer symptoms and the possible side effects of chemotherapy. However, the MDH restricts this permission to only cancer patients whose conditions or treatments cause:
Nausea or severe vomiting
Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS): While there is currently no cure for HIV/AIDS, medical marijuana provides relief to patients from some of the symptoms caused by the condition.
Tourette's Syndrome: Patients with Tourette's Syndrome lose control of their nervous system randomly. This loss of control can cause the patient to make involuntary sounds or movements repeatedly. Marijuana eases these symptoms and provides patients with relief from the debilitating condition.
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis: Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) attacks the patient's nervous system and causes specific impairments. These symptoms include slurred speech, difficulty chewing, tightness in the muscles, and also muscle weakness around the arms and legs. At present, ALS does not have any known cure. Still, medical marijuana slows the progression of the condition and alleviates patients from constant pain.
Seizures: The MDH permits patients suffering from seizures, including those caused by epilepsy, to use medical marijuana.
Crohn's Disease: Crohn's Disease is an inflammatory bowel disease that causes swelling in the patient's digestive tract. Patients exhibit symptoms, including pain and appetite loss, that certain compounds in medical marijuana help alleviate to provide relief for the patient.
Terminal illness: The MDH also permits Minnesota patients with terminal diseases with a life expectancy of less than one year to use medical marijuana to alleviate their pain. Patients diagnosed with such terminal illnesses must be confirmed to have one or more of these symptoms:
Severe or chronic pain
Severe nausea or vomiting
Severe and multiple spasms: Spasms, especially those caused by multiple sclerosis, are other conditions patients can treat with medical marijuana in Minnesota. The way patients experience these spasms vary. Some may be mild, experiencing only tightness of the muscles. However, others are very severe, attacking the patients' joint areas. The MDH reviewed several studies indicating that medical marijuana may ease these pains.
Any other condition approved by the Commissioner of Health.
The above mentioned are the only approved conditions that necessitate the approval for a patient to use medical marijuana. Patients suffering from other conditions that medical marijuana can potentially alleviate are to submit written applications to the MDH. The MDH receives such applications between June 1 and July 31 of every year. It is important to note that applications outside the given dates are not considered.
While Minnesota is yet to legalize recreational use of marijuana, enrollment in the state's Medical Marijuana Registry grants patients of certain medical conditions a number of advantages, including:
Under Minnesota weed laws, Minnesota does not issue medical marijuana cards. Instead, medical marijuana patients require enrollment on the Medical Cannabis Registry. This allows them to purchase medical cannabis from state-licensed pharmacies. Their registration is valid for a year, after which they will be required to re-enroll.
Minnesota marijuana laws do not have medical marijuana reciprocity. As a result, registered medical marijuana patients from other states cannot legally purchase, possess, or use medical marijuana in Minnesota from their state-endorsed pharmacies.
By Minnesota weed laws, Minnesota does not issue medical marijuana identification cards or their equivalent. Nonetheless, the protections Minnesota marijuana laws offer to persons enrolled in the state Medical Cannabis Registry do not extend beyond Minnesota's borders.
Following Minnesota marijuana laws, Minnesota does not recognize out-of-state medical marijuana cards since it does not offer medical marijuana reciprocity. Therefore, medical marijuana patients and caregivers from other states cannot legally purchase, possess, or use medical marijuana until they become residents and can enroll in the Minnesota Medical Marijuana Registry.
No, medical cannabis is illegal under federal drug laws. Therefore, regardless of state protection, federal law would not favor registered marijuana patients in certain instances, including: