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  • Writer's pictureAshley Slimak

10 Things You Should Know About Arkansas's Medical Marijuana Program

Updated: Jul 14, 2023

In November of 2016, the Arkansas Medical Marijuana Amendment, also known as Issue 6, was approved in Arkansas for the legalization of medical marijuana.  The amendment established a program for growing, purchasing and distributing medical cannabis while providing legal protections for patients and physicians. 

If you are thinking about becoming a medical marijuana patient in Arkansas or don't know much about the program, we have provided 10 things you should know below.

1. There are currently 18 qualifying conditions in Arkansas

In order to become eligible for your medical marijuana card, you have to be diagnosed with one of the qualifying conditions outlined in the Arkansas medical marijuana amendment. The current conditions are as follows:

  • Cancer

  • Glaucoma

  • Positive status for HIV/AIDS

  • Hepatitis C

  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)

  • Tourette’s syndrome

  • Crohn’s disease

  • Ulcerative colitis

  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

  • Severe arthritis

  • Fibromyalgia

  • Alzheimer’s disease

  • A chronic or debilitating disease/medical condition/treatment that produces one or more of the following:

  • Cachexia, or wasting syndrome​

Intractable pain, or pain that has not responded to ordinary treatment or surgical methods for more than six (6) months:

  • Peripheral neuropathy

  • Seizures, including those characteristic of epilepsy

  • Severe nausea

  • Severe and persistent muscle spasms, including those characteristic of multiple sclerosis (MS)

2. Your Arkansas medical marijuana is good for one year after the date of issuance

Arkansas medical marijuana cards expire one year after the date of issuance. The state of Arkansas then requires patients to renew their cards every year.

3. There are 33 licensed medical marijuana dispensaries in Arkansas

Although only 17 are currently open, there are 33 licensed dispensaries across the state of Arkansas for medical marijuana patients to access. These dispensaries have a wide variety of products including cannabis flower, edibles, vape, tinctures and more.

4. Arkansas allows for combustion of marijuana, so smoking marijuana flower is permitted.

In some states such as Montana, Ohio and Pennsylvania, their medical marijuana programs do not allow for the smoking of medical marijuana. Patients can only consume by using vape, edibles or concentrates. Luckily, Arkansas allows for the most popular consumption method.

5. There is a limit to how much you can purchase at a dispensary over a period of time

Both qualified medical marijuana patients and caregivers can only purchase up to 2.5 ounces (71 grams) of cannabis every 14 days from a licensed Arkansas dispensary.

6. You can't use medical marijuana everywhere in Arkansas

Medical marijuana in Arkansas should only be used in your own private residence. The state prohibits patients from possessing or engaging in the use of marijuana in areas such as public transportation, on the grounds of schools or universities, inside of motor vehicles, at an alcohol or drug treatment facility and more.

7. Medical marijuana patients can have caregivers

A designated caregiver is an individual who is selected by a registered patient as the person authorized to purchase, possess, dispense and assist in the administration of medical marijuana to the patient. Caregivers can also be an Arkansas medical marijuana patient and there is no limit the number of patients they can serve.

8. Visiting medical marijuana patients from out-of-state can use their cards in Arkansas

The Arkansas Department of Health allows out-of-state patients to use their medical marijuana cards in Arkansas and purchase from dispensaries. An application to become a visiting patient will need to be completed, along with a $50 fee to the state. If approved, the temporary card will be valid for 30 days.

9. Arkansas medical marijuana patients can not own firearms

Registered medical marijuana patients in Arkansas are federally prohibited from possessing or purchasing firearms as it can result in an automatic felony.

10. Over 36,000 patients have been approved for medical marijuana in Arkansas

Currently, over 36,600 patients have been approved for their Arkansas medical marijuana cards and the count continues to grow. As the state begins to see more dispensary openings, we can expect the number to increase even more.

If you are interested in being a part of the growth and believe you qualify for medical marijuana treatment, schedule an appointment today for your evaluation.

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