Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear’s executive order to partly legalize medical marijuana in the Bluegrass State for certain individuals goes into effect Jan. 1.
Barring any litigation, court rulings or legislation that block the order from going into effect, here is how the governor’s medical marijuana order will work in Kentucky from that day forward.
Who is eligible to possess and use medical marijuana?
According to Beshear’s order, individuals within Kentucky who are diagnosed with one of 21 medical conditions could be eligible to possess and use marijuana purchased legally in others states, under certain conditions.
Eligible individuals are required to have a written certification from a medical provider licensed in Kentucky or from the resident’s home state with a bona fide patient-provider relationship to them, stating the patient suffers from one of the following medical conditions:
- Amytrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) or Lou Gehrig’s disease
- Intractable seizures
- Parkinson’s disease
- Crohn’s disease
- Multiple sclerosis
- Sickle cell anemia
- Severe and chronic pain
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- Cachexia or wasting syndrome
- Severe arthritis
- Hepatitis C
- Intractable pain
- Muscular dystrophy
- Huntington’s disease
- Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) or Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS)
- A terminal illness
Also eligible to possess, but not use, legally purchased medical marijuana are caregivers for the diagnosed patients. These caregivers must be at least 21 years old and have a “significant responsibility” for managing the patient’s well-being along with a written document indicating their caregiver status. A parent or legal guardian of the patient will not be required to produce a caregiver document.
Eligible people with a valid written certification from a doctor can possess and use marijuana if it is legally purchased in another state and they save the written receipt that shows where and when it was purchased.
Such people may not possess more than eight ounces of marijuana at any given time within Kentucky.
As for the written certification from the medical provider, it must contain the name, address and phone number of both the patient and medical provider.
The written certification from the physician must also include their medical license number, a statement indicating they have a bona fide provider-patient relationship, their diagnosis of the medical condition and the provider’s signature and date.
In what states can medical marijuana be legally purchased?
Kentucky is one of just 13 states where it is illegal to purchase either medical or recreational marijuana.
Due to successful ballot initiatives in the 2022 general election in Missouri and Maryland, recreational marijuana will soon be legal in 21 states.