For someone new to medical cannabis, navigating the world of medical cannabis in Maine can be a daunting undertaking. Below, find a few of the basics you will want to familiarize yourself with before seeking a medical cannabis provider:
- Is medical cannabis is legal in Maine?
Medical marijuana in the U.S. is controlled at the state level. In 1999, Maine legalized medical marijuana by a majority vote on Ballot Question 2, making Maine the 5th state in the US to legalize medical cannabis. The law was modified in 2009 allowing for a dispensary system in the state along with a registered cannabis caregiver system. The Maine Department of Health and Human Services regulates the state’s medical cannabis program. Per federal law, cannabis is illegal as noted in the Controlled Substances Act, but the federal government has stated they will not actively prosecute patients and caregivers complying with state medical marijuana laws. Learn more. To purchase medical cannabis in Maine, you will need a medical card certifying your qualifying medical condition.
2. How can I get a medical marijuana card in Maine?
There are a few ways to go about securing a Maine Medical Cannabis Card. Sweet Dirt offers convenient medical card certification on site, via Canna Care’s Telemedicine website. The process is simple and typically takes under 20 minutes. For Maine residents, the four easy steps are as follows:
1. Create an account as a new member on the Telemedicine site.
2. Schedule an appointment with a medical cannabis specialist.
3. Access educational resources that can provide you with an overview on the basics of cannabis, its benefits, and how it is consumed.
4. Complete your scheduled Telemedicine appointment. You can either conduct this virtual appointment from the privacy of your own home or at the Sweet Dirt storefront. It is suggested that you have your relevant medical records available for the Telemedicine appointment. You will also need a valid Maine license or other State-issued photo identification.
Once you have been issued your Maine Medical Cannabis ID card, take it - along with your valid Maine driver’s license or state ID - to any state-licensed Medical caregiver storefront or dispensary in Maine.
Not a resident of Maine? Click here for instructions on how residents of MA, CT, DE, MD, PA, IL, RI, and NY can get their state-issued Maine Medical Cannabis ID card. (It’s important to note that medical cannabis products purchased in Maine may not be transported out of the State).
3. What are the qualifying conditions for a medical card?
Patients may be eligible for a Maine medical cannabis card if they suffer from one of the following:
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)
- Cachexia or wasting syndrome
- Chronic pain
- Crohn’s disease
- Hepatitis C
- HIV or AIDS
- Huntington’s disease
- Inflammatory bowel disease
- Multiple sclerosis
- Nail patella syndrome
- Parkinson’s disease
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
4. Where can I purchase medical Cannabis? And, what is the difference between a dispensary and a caregiver?
In Maine, patients have the option of growing their own medicinal cannabis (in limited quantity) or acquiring medicinal cannabis from a small number of dispensaries or from one of more than 2400 cannabis caregivers scattered across the State. The caregiver model is patient-centered, as well as typically providing a higher quality of care. Traditionally, caregivers in Maine have been advocates for the rights of the patient. The caregiver approach is more consultative, personalized for the patient. Look for established caregivers that have been practicing for a few years and have deep plant experience and a compassionate approach.
5. What questions should I ask a medical cannabis provider?
If you are ready to visit a dispensary or caregiver, especially for the first time, you are bound to have lots of questions. Here are a few you should consider asking to ensure you get the best quality of care and the right product for you.
- What is are the right strains for my condition?
Medical cannabis comes in many strains and varietals. Depending on your illness, certain strains will be more medicinally effective than others. Click here for a quick primer on the major cannabis families, indica and sativa, and their applications.
- Who is the cannabis farmer and how was this cannabis grown? Is it locally sourced? Is it organically grown? Is the cannabis certified clean by a third-party?
At Sweet Dirt, our flower is all locally grown and audited and certified clean by MOFGA (Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association). We are just one of a dozen or so cannabis providers to voluntarily certify our cannabis with MOFGA. Our patients value this commitment to delivering a product free of pesticides, fungicides and other harmful additives.
- Can you help me select the best method (for me) for consuming medical cannabis?
There are several ways cannabis can be consumed including inhalation (smoking or vaping), oral (via tinctures or edibles, for example), or topical (such as salves, balms or lotions). There are benefits to each approach, so you should discuss these with your medical cannabis provider.
- Are the products in you offer lab-tested?
Testing of cannabis flower and products allows patients to make informed decisions based on the purity and potency of the cannabis products they are considering.
- Where can I see your product pricing? What forms of payment do you accept?
- If applicable, be sure to ask if your provider is disability-friendly.
Have a question you don’t see here? Visit our FAQ page or call us at 207-439-1600.