The amendments have stemmed from an executive order Gov. Phil Murphy had signed earlier that proposed to extend the program’s reach and accessibility, reduce costs, remove red tape and bureaucracy, permit doctors to participate in the program anonymously and expand the list of qualifying conditions.
- “Reducing the registration fee for qualifying patients and their caregivers from $200 to $100
- Adding seniors and military veterans to those eligible for the reduced registration fee of $20
- Authorizing qualifying patients to designate up to two primary caregivers instead of just one
- Reflecting the addition of seven “debilitating medical conditions” including PTSD, by statutory enactment; and six new conditions (anxiety, chronic pain of visceral origin, chronic pain related to musculoskeletal disorders, migraines, Tourette syndrome, and Opioid Use Disorder), by the State Health Commissioner’s March 22, 2018, petition decision, and January 23, 2019 revision.
- Allowing physicians to opt out of inclusion on a public list of participating physicians
- Elevating the Medicinal Marijuana Program to division status within the Department of Health.
- Expands the forms of medical marijuana available in New Jersey to include oil-based formulations, like vape cartridges.”
Additionally, the following reforms will take effect once the rule is published:
- “Creating a separate permitting system for cultivation, manufacturing and dispensing marijuana for medical purposes, which would increase the available supply of, and patient access to, usable marijuana and allow for specialization in the market.
- Streamlining the process to petition for the addition of “debilitating medical conditions” by removing the requirement that petitions first be referred to the Medicinal Marijuana Review Panel.
- Emphasizing the advisory role of the Medicinal Marijuana Review Panel to include the provision of guidance and recommendations to the State Health Commissioner regarding the medical use of marijuana.
- Removing the requirement of psychiatric evaluation as a condition of physician certification of minors as qualifying patients.”
The rule is expected to be published in the New Jersey register on 20 May.