Medical cannabis has been in the news a lot lately, thanks to the many benefits it offers to those who are suffering from a wide range of chronic medical conditions. In Texas, it has been legal since 2015 with the implementation of the Texas’ Compassionate Use Program (TCUP). As the program has evolved to expand the list of qualifying conditions, more and more Texan patients can benefit from this treatment alternative.
So, what do you need to get qualified for medical marijuana in Texas?
To be eligible for the program, you must be a permanent Texas resident, at least 18 years old (or have a legal guardian who can provide consent) and you must have a qualifying medical condition. Currently, the list of qualifying conditions includes cancer, epilepsy and other seizure disorders, autism, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), multiple sclerosis (MS), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), spasticity, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and other incurable neurodegenerative diseases.
Having met the basic requirements for the program, the first step is scheduling a telemedicine appointment with a certified medical cannabis doctor. The process is simple, just watch the video below to see how to schedule an appointment. They will evaluate your medical history, symptoms, and conditions to determine your eligibility for the program. Note that only licensed cannabis doctors can prescribe medical cannabis in Texas so keep that in mind when choosing a provider.
Once the medical cannabis doctor has confirmed your eligibility, they will customize an individual treatment plan and register you in the Compassionate Use Registry of Texas (CURT). In contrast with other states, in Texas, there is no medical marijuana card. Once registered in the CURT, you can fill your prescription at any of the Texas-licensed dispensaries and then have proof that the medical cannabis you have in your possession is legal within the state limits.
The third step is filling the prescription. Prescriptions can be filled at any of the licensed dispensaries in the state. Ask your doctor about the options you will find at the dispensary and which ones better suit your needs, so that when you go to the dispensary, you know exactly what you want. This is important to note because filling a prescription at a dispensary differs from that of a traditional pharmacy. At a dispensary, patients find a myriad of options that fit the details in their prescription but differ in form, flavor, and time of onset. Having options sounds like a great proposition but in practical terms, it can create confusion, particularly for new patients. Knowing what you’re looking for saves time, and money and provides peace of mind.
Last but not least, you’ll follow up with your medical marijuana doctor in 12 months with access to a patient portal for anything needed within the year. Follow-ups are an essential piece of the treatment because they provide an opportunity to assess treatment progress and to make any necessary adjustments to the prescription; they also create a space for you to ask any questions and obtain prescription refill orders, therefore continuing participation in the program. Dr. Matthew Brimberry, Medical Director at Texas Cannabis Clinic and one of the first certified doctors in Texas to provide access to medical cannabis in the state, explained in a recent interview: “The beauty of this program is that the physician gets you qualified and it’s a bona fide patient-physician relationship [...] We follow-up with you, we see how you’re doing and we can see the benefits of this medicine.”
Getting qualified for medical cannabis in Texas is simple. All you need to do is schedule a telemedicine consultation with a certified medical cannabis doctor, receive your medical cannabis prescription, and fill it at a licensed dispensary. By following the process outlined, eligible Texans can experience relief from their debilitating medical conditions and improve their overall quality of life. Texas Cannabis Clinic has simplified the process of scheduling a telemedicine appointment to obtain medical cannabis in Texas. If you do not qualify, you do not pay. In a recent podcast with the Texas Hemp Show, Dr. Brimberry said it best: “That’s how we fit into your community. It’s helping guide patients through getting certified and also helping them apply the medicine to the right effect so that they get a good result.”
To learn more about medical cannabis in Texas, please visit TCC’s resources page.