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Blame it on the undeniable evidence supporting medical cannabis’ potential to improve the quality of life for a variety of patients. In June of 2016, Ohio lawmakers passed House Bill 523. As a result, this law established rules for the Ohio Medical Marijuana Control Program (OMMJP). Consequently, this made it legal for patients to obtain medicinal cannabis with a medical marijuana card. Ohio patients may also have a medical marijuana caregiver … or three. 

 

https://www.youtube.com/embed/XgYuS7Z8x0o

Watch our short video to learn more about Caregivers.

What Is an Ohio Medical Marijuana Caregiver?

A caregiver is a person who can buy, transport, possess, and administer medical marijuana to a registered medical marijuana patient. The patient designates their caregiver, who can be a family member, nurse, spouse, or any significant person to assist them. Originally, Ohio patients could have a maximum of two caregivers, and an individual could be a caregiver for only two patients. 

 

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Ohio Board of Pharmacy has approved a maximum of three caregivers per patient. Additionally, it allows caregivers to serve up to three patients. 

 

Also, the Board is allowing caregivers to register right away with them instead of making the patient go through their MMJ doctor with the caregiver information. These alternate patient/caregiver guidelines will remain in effect until further notice. 

Who Qualifies to Be an MMJ Caregiver in Ohio?

To apply for caregiver status, you must:

  • Be 21 or older unless you are the legal parent of a minor patient applying as their caregiver,
  • Have an acceptable form of ID: unexpired United States passport, United States passport card, state-issued driver’s license, or other state-issued identification from the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV),
  • Serve as a caregiver for a maximum of three patients,
  • Pay a $25.00 caregiver registration fee.

Become an Ohio Medical Cannabis Caregiver

Individuals can become a caregiver to patients in one of two ways (the first way is the original way; the second way has been adopted to reduce risks during the COVID-19 outbreak): 

 

  1. Through the patient’s recommending physician. The State Medical Board of Ohio has authorized recommending physicians to use telemedicine instead of in-person visits. Patients are encouraged to contact their recommended physician to add additional caregivers via telemedicine. Get your telehealth visit and add your caregiver with an Elevate Holistics MMJ doctor.

 

-OR-

 

  1. Submission of a Caregiver Registration Application directly to the Board of Pharmacy. NOTE: This option is only available for patients who are already active in the registry. This second way is allowed until further notice to reduce patient exposure during the COVID-19 outbreak. 

 

For those who choose to apply as an Ohio medical marijuana caregiver with the second option, you must: 

  1. Download, complete, and sign the Caregiver Registration Application in this PDF
  2. Provide a copy/photograph of your ID showing your name, address, and date of birth.
  3. Submit both of these by sending them to [email protected]. (There are several free applications (e.g., Adobe Scan) for smartphones that allow for the scanning of documents using your phone’s camera.) 

Key Caregiver Skills

Being a caregiver requires certain skills. After all, it is a big responsibility that requires caregivers to combine soft and technical skills. 

 

These are crucial skills that each caregiver should have:

  • Physical strength and stamina
  • Basic first-aid knowledge
  • Communication skills
  • Organization
  • Problem-solving skills
  • Compassion
  • Patience
  • Respect

Who’s Not Eligible for Medical Marijuana Caregiver Status

Ohio rules prohibit individuals from obtaining caregiver registrations who are included in one or more of the following databases: 

  • The system for award management (SAM) maintained by the United States General Services Administration;
  • The list of excluded individuals and entities maintained by the Office of Inspector General in the United States Department of Health and Human Services pursuant to 42 U.S.C. part 1320a-7 (as effective on January 3, 2017) and 42 U.S.C. part 1320c-5 (as effective on January 3, 2017);
  • The Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities (DODD) online abuser registry, established under section 5123.52 of the Revised Code;
  • The internet-based sex offender and child-victim offender database, established under division (A)(11) of section 2950.13 of the Revised Code;
  • The national sex offender public website, established under 18 United States Code 16918;
  • The internet-based database of Department of Rehabilitation and Correction inmates, established under section 5120.66 of the Revised Code;
  • The state nurse aide registry, established under section 3721.32 of the Revised Code, and there is a statement detailing findings by the director of health that the provider applicant or employee neglected or abused a long-term care facility or residential care facility resident or misappropriated property of such a resident.

Do You Get Paid for Being an Ohio MMJ Caregiver?

According to the Ohio Laws and Rules for Patients and Caregivers:

 

“A caregiver shall not receive payment or other compensation for services provided as a caregiver other than reimbursement for reasonable expenses incurred in the provision of services as a caregiver. In the case of an employee of a hospice provider, nursing facility, or medical facility, or a visiting nurse, personal care attendant, or home health aide serving as a caregiver, the individual shall not receive payment or compensation above or beyond his or her regular wages.”

Marijuana Patient-Caregiver Delivery Services

Marijuana patient-caregiver delivery services, which are active in many other states, are effectively banned in the state of Ohio. Since November 2018, the Ohio Medical Marijuana Control Program has been allowing appeals to Ohio HB 523, so we could see some changes in the near future.

Elevate Holistics Is Here to Help

Elevate Holistics offers hassle-free access to Ohio medical marijuana doctors. You can book a same-day telemedicine appointment and get your certified physician recommendation in minutes—all from the privacy of your home. We are easy to use and industry standard security and compliance compliant, so you know your information is safe.

 

Not only are we a secure and easy-to-use online platform with MMJ doctors, but we’re also a budding community of MMJ patient resources. Feel free to contact us with any questions about registering. Join our FB group to see what’s going on and what experts are sharing in our cannabis community. 

More About Ohio MMJ

Find out if you can have a gun and a medical card in Ohio.

For more answers, check out our Ohio MMJ FAQs.

Represent the Buckeye State in Elevate Holistics’ cannabis community on Facebook!

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Elevate Holistics’ process is quick, affordable, and done entirely online. It’s never been so easy.

About the author

Michael Lawal is a seasoned content writer with specialized expertise in the medical cannabis industry. With a background that blends journalism and health sciences, Michael has a knack for translating complex medical cannabis research into accessible and engaging content. His writing portfolio showcases a range of work from informative articles and research summaries to patient education materials. Committed to raising awareness about the benefits and responsible use of medical cannabis, Michael's work is a valuable resource for both consumers and professionals in the field.
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