Ohio recently became the 25th state to legalize the regulated use and sale of medical marijuana. Because medical marijuana has yet to be legalized on the Federal level, each state to implement a medical marijuana policy has had to craft its own nuanced laws on its use and distribution. Before being permitted to prescribe this substance, doctors in Ohio must complete training and register with the state. Only then will they be able to recommend patients through a “registration process determined by the Ohio State Pharmacy Board,” according to cleveland.com. Because each patient has to go through the same rigorous registration process, the state can control who receives the recommendations. This helps to prevent abuse of the system, but it also means that those who need treatment may need to wait longer.
Only once these recommendations are approved by the state are patients able to use marijuana, but there are many caveats. One striking difference between Ohio’s medical marijuana laws and those in most other states is the fact that smoking is still prohibited no matter the circumstances. Forcing those who wish to use the substance to use a vaporizer. Furthermore, until some sort of system for cultivation and distribution is set up there is still no way for patients to legally obtain marijuana, though they will not be penalized for possessing it.
Another key difference between Ohio’s medical marijuana laws and those in states such as California is the limited number of conditions for which you can receive a recommendation. Under the new law, there are only about twenty conditions that warrant medical marijuana. Though this may change in the near future, this list is rather short compared to many other states. Though Ohio’s medical marijuana program is one of the more stringent in the country, it could pave the way for a more relaxed approach to medical marijuana in the future.