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Missouri Just Legalized Medical Marijuana. What’s Next?

Missouri voters enacted medical cannabis legalization through Amendment 2 Tuesday night, driving the issue deep into its final US battlegrounds—the Midwest and South. Amendment 2 passed with 61% of the vote.

The strange election saw three medical cannabis legalization measures, two of which voters rejected. Amendment 3 failed, 30% yes to 69% no Tuesday night, with 71% of precincts reporting. Proposition C failed 41% yes to 58% no.

The midterm elections in Missouri saw a relatively massive voter turnout of 54%, according to early estimates.

Is Medical Cannabis Legal as of Nov. 7?

Whoa there, Tex. Not exactly. You’ve got to get a doctor’s note for it, then get it from a licensed dispensary or grow your own. That’s going to take a bit of time.

What Conditions Qualify?

Amendment 2 sets out a clear number of medical conditions that qualify for treatment with medical cannabis. Those include:

  • Cancer
  • Epilepsy
  • Glaucoma
  • Intractable migraines
  • Conditions that cause persistent pain or muscle spasms, including MS, Parkinson’s disease, and Tourette’s syndrome.
  • Debilitating psychiatric disorders such as PTSD
  • HIV or AIDS
  • A chronic medical condition normally treated with prescription medication that can lead to dependence, when a physician determines that medical marijuana could be an effective and safer treatment. (This is most commonly used with regard to prescription opioids.)
  • Any terminal illness
  • Hepatitis C
  • ALS
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Huntington’s disease
  • Autism
  • Neuropathies
  • Sickle cell anemia
  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Cachexia
  • Wasting disease
  • Any other chronic or debilitating medical condition that, in the professional judgment of a physician, might be helped by the use of medical cannabis.

How Much Can I Possess?

According to the text of the initiative, the state can set monthly patient sales limits, but not at less than four ounces of flower. A note from two doctors can raise a patient’s sales limits.

The state can set patient possession limits, too, but not at less than sixty days supply of flower. A note from two doctors can raise a patient’s sales limits.

Can I Buy Or Sell It?

You’ll be able to buy it one day from dispensaries, with a doctor’s note and state identification card.

Doctors will be able to prescribe cannabis for one of 10 medical conditions, including cancer, PTSD, chronic pain, and Parkinson’s disease.

You can’t sell medical cannabis in Missouri without extensive licensing. Not less than 24 licensed dispensaries would sell it to patients. It’s not covered by health insurance.

The law taxes cannabis at 4%. The money goes to veterans in Missouri.

Looking For Legal Cannabis? Leafly Has All Your Local Menus

When Will Medical Dispensaries Open?

Amendment 2 requires the state begin taking applications for qualifying patients no later than June 4, 2019.

The state also must begin accepting applications for dispensaries no later than August 3, 2019. The state must process dispensary applications within 150 days of receiving them. It could be a while after that, depending on the other parts of the system.

Where Can I Use Medical Cannabis?

Not in a public place “unless provided by law.”

What About Driving?

It’s illegal to drive “under the influence of marijuana.”

Can I Get Fired For Using Medical Cannabis?

On the job? Sure. Amendment 2 has nothing in it that “permits a person to bring a claim against any employer… [for] prohibiting … being under the influence of marijuana while at work.”

Off the job, it depends, but probably.

Can I Grow It At Home?

Patients or their caregivers would be allowed to grow up to six plants in an “enclosed,” “locked” “facility that is equipped with security devices” limiting access. Collective personal medical gardens could max out at 18 plants.

Amendment 2 came from a patient, doctor, and veteran coalition New Approach Missouri.

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David Downs

David Downs directs news and lifestyle coverage as the California Bureau Chief for Leafly.com. He's written for WIRED, Rolling Stone and Billboard, and is the former cannabis editor of the San Francisco Chronicle, as well as the author of several cannabis books including 'Marijuana Harvest' by Ed Rosenthal and David Downs. He co-hosts The Hash podcast. TW: @davidrdowns | IG @daviddowns

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