The Illinois medical cannabis program has been expanded to allow nurses (ARPNs-FPA and APNs) and physician assistants to recommend medical cannabis use. Previously, only a doctor of medicine or osteopathy could recommend medical cannabis to a patient. The state does not maintain a list of medical marijuana doctors.
Yes. According to the Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Program Act, a patient must obtain and submit a medical cannabis certification to join the Illinois medical cannabis program. Since an authorized physician can only issue this certification, you must schedule an appointment with a medical marijuana doctor to assess your medical records and current condition to determine whether you qualify for medical marijuana use. Your application will require the certification to join the state's medical cannabis program. You may only use medical cannabis in Illinois upon approval as a bona fide participant of the state's medical cannabis program.
Minor (under 18) patients must schedule appointments with two separate medical marijuana doctors as they are required to upload two certifications with their applications. According to the minor patient application instructions, a healthcare professional certification and a reviewing healthcare professional certification are required to register a medical cannabis patient in the state.
Veterans receiving health care at VA (Veterans Affairs) establishments do not need to see a medical marijuana doctor to obtain a certification to use medical marijuana. They are only required to provide their medical records from their attending Veteran Affairs establishments for the previous 12 months when applying for inclusion in the Illinois medical cannabis program.
A patient may only receive a medical cannabis recommendation from a doctor of medicine, a doctor of osteopathic medicine, an advanced practice registered nurse-full practice authority (APRN-FPA), an advanced practice nurse (APN), or a physician assistant.
The medical provider must have a bona fide provider-patient relationship with the patient, be licensed under the Medical Practice Act of 1987, and possess a controlled substance license under the Illinois Controlled Substances Act.
The Illinois Department of Public Health or any state agency does not maintain a list of medical marijuana doctors authorized to issue healthcare provider certifications.
Since the IDPH does not publish a list of licensed medical marijuana doctors, patients are advised to speak with the healthcare practitioners providing treatment for their debilitating conditions and their primary care providers for medical marijuana doctor recommendations.
Yes. The Illinois medical cannabis program allows medical marijuana doctors to meet with patients online via telemedicine for medical assessment and healthcare provider certification issuance. Telemedicine appointments are preferred by many patients as they allow them to keep their medical status discreet.
A medical marijuana doctor may recommend up to 2.5 ounces of medical marijuana every fortnight to a registered patient. However, in some circumstances, such as where the certifying provider has determined the 2.5-ounce limit as insufficient, a waiver amending the stipulated cap may be issued to a patient, allowing the purchase and possession of a higher medical cannabis supply.