Medical marijuana has been a hot topic in Iowa since 2017, when the state passed House Bill 524. This bill legalized medical cannabis for certain qualifying conditions, and the list has continued to expand with the passage of House File 2589 in 2019. With how fast this industry is growing, it’s important to understand the criteria for a medical marijuana card in Iowa.Â
In order to receive a medical marijuana card in Iowa, you must meet specific criteria: be a resident of Iowa, be at least 18 years of age, and have been diagnosed with one of the qualifying conditions specified in the Iowa Medical Cannabidiol Program.Â
Let’s explore the different qualifying conditions for medical marijuana in Iowa and these will help you understand the steps to take in order to receive a medical card. So if you or someone close to you needs access to medical cannabis, read on to learn more.Â
Qualifying Conditions For Iowa Medical Card
- Cancer â if the illness or its treatment produces one or more of the following: severe or chronic pain, nausea or severe vomiting, cachexia, or severe wasting.
- Crohnâs diseaseÂ Â
- Chronic pain
- Multiple Sclerosis with severe and persistent muscle spasms
- AIDS or HIV (as defined in Iowa Code, section 141A.1)
- Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)
- Parkinsonâs disease
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- Any terminal illness with a probable life expectancy of under one year â if the illness or its treatment produces one or more of the following: severe or chronic pain, nausea or severe vomiting, cachexia or severe wasting
- Ulcerative colitisÂ
- Severe, intractable pediatric autism with self-injurious or aggressive behaviors
- Severe, intractable autism with self-injurious or aggressive behaviors
- Corticobasal DegenerationÂ
Here Are the Most Common Medical Conditions That Qualify for Medical Cannabis in Iowa
Chronic pain is a type of pain that lasts for a long time. It can be caused by an injury, illness, or medical condition, and it does not go away easily. THC (the chemical found in marijuana) can help people with chronic pain by changing the way their body senses pain and helping to reduce inflammation.Â
THC works with the body’s endocannabinoid system to alter how we feel and react to certain things, like pain. Medical marijuana has been proven to help manage chronic pain better than other treatments, so if you have been diagnosed with chronic pain, you may qualify for a medical card in Iowa.
Cancer is one of the most common qualifying conditions for a medical marijuana card in Iowa. Cannabis has been found to have several therapeutic benefits and can relieve some of the symptoms associated with cancer. This includes:Â
- Neuropathic pain
- Chemotherapy-induced vomiting and nausea
- Sleep disturbancesÂ
- Muscle spasms
Combining medical cannabis with traditional therapies can help cancer patients manage their symptoms better and improve the quality of their life, so if you’ve been diagnosed with cancer, you may qualify for a medical marijuana card in Iowa.Â
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition that can be caused by a traumatic event or situation. Symptoms of PTSD can include nightmares, flashbacks, irritability, and difficulty concentrating. Cannabis has been found to have certain therapeutic benefits, like reducing anxiety and helping people with PTSD get better sleep.
Cannabis has been shown to reduce activity in the amygdala, which is the part of our brain responsible for fear and anxiety. It can also help reduce the physical symptoms of PTSD, such as muscle tightness, headaches, and insomnia.
Seizures are a common qualifying condition for medical marijuana in Iowa. Cannabis has been found to be beneficial in the treatment of seizures, particularly those caused by epilepsy. THC has been found to have anticonvulsant effects and can help reduce the frequency and severity of seizures.Â
Medical cannabis is also known to reduce inflammation, which helps protect neurons from damage that could lead to seizures. If you or someone close to you suffers from seizures, you may qualify for a medical card in Iowa.
The traditional pharmaceuticals used to treat Parkinsonâs disease can have many unpleasant side effects, while medical cannabis has been found to be beneficial in managing the symptoms of this condition. Medical marijuana has been shown to reduce tremors, improve sleep and appetite, reduce anxiety and depression, and improve mobility.
The CBD and THC content of medical marijuana can help reduce inflammation and protect neurons from damage, which helps improve the symptoms of Parkinsonâs disease.Â If you have been diagnosed with Parkinsonâs, you are eligible for a medical card in Iowa.Â
After Meeting All the Criteria or Requirements, Now Whatâs Next?Â
Getting a medical marijuana card in Iowa can be a straightforward process for qualified patients.Â
The first step is to schedule an appointment with a healthcare practitioner, such as an MD/DO, ARNP, PA, or podiatrist. Before the appointment, it is important to download and print two documents â the Healthcare Practitioner Certification Form and Patient Information Sheet â which must be brought along for the appointment.Â
During the appointment, the healthcare practitioner will evaluate your condition and determine your eligibility for a medical marijuana card based on Iowaâs guidelines.Â
If you qualify, they will then sign the Healthcare Practitioner Certification Form. Once that is complete, you can use the State of Iowaâs online registration system to apply for your medical marijuana card.Â
You will need to provide your contact information as well as any additional documentation needed to verify your identity and eligibility status â such as proof of residency or disability status if applicable.Â
Once you have completed the registration process and submitted all the required documents, you will receive your medical marijuana card in the mail within 5-7 business days. With this card, qualified patients are allowed to purchase any medical cannabidiol product from one of the stateâs licensed dispensaries.Â
By following these steps and completing all the required paperwork, qualified patients in Iowa can easily obtain a medical marijuana card and legally access cannabis products when prescribed by their healthcare practitioner.
Also Read: Medical Marijuana Iowa Patients FAQs
Donât Have a Healthcare Practitioner?Â
If you donât have a healthcare practitioner or marijuana specialist, Kif can help. Our telemedicine service makes it easy to connect with a network of doctors and become certified for medical marijuana in minutes.Â
We have experienced healthcare practitioners who can evaluate your condition, discuss treatment options, and certify your eligibility for medical marijuana. We use secure online audio-video communication technology so you can consult with our clinicians from the comfort of your home.Â
Book your appointment with Kif Doctors in Iowa and start your journey to finding relief through medical marijuana in Iowa!