In Growing Marijuana in New Mexico – NM Cannabis State Laws (2021) we gave a brief overview on how New Mexico residents can apply to their state’s medical marijuana program. Recreational marijuana is legal in the Mountain State but if you are a patient with a debilitating condition, there are a few reasons why you may want to get a medical marijuana card.
- Overview of Medical Marijuana in New Mexico
- Why should you get a marijuana card in New Mexico
- How to get a medical marijuana card in New Mexico
- Frequently Asked Questions on Getting a New Mexico Medical Marijuana Card
Overview of Medical Marijuana in New Mexico
New Mexico is the first state to pass legislation allowing the use of marijuana for medical purposes under the Controlled Substances Therapeutic Research Act in 1978. However, patient access was severely limited since marijuana had to be supplied by the National Institute on Drug Abuse through an FDA-approved program.
In 2007, Gov. Bill Richardson signed SB 523 which finally gave New Mexico a full-fledged medical marijuana program.
You can read up on New Mexico’s medical marijuana rules here: SB 523 THE LYNN AND ERIN COMPASSIONATE USE ACT.
New Mexico’s medical marijuana now allows patients to purchase up to eight ounces (230 units) of cannabis over a 90-day period and cultivate up to 4 mature plants and 12 immature ones. Get more information on how cannabis units work here.
To qualify, a patient must have at least one of the following conditions:
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (Lou Gehrig’s disease)
- Autism spectrum disorder
- Cervical dystonia
- Crohn’s disease
- Epilepsy and other seizure disorders
- Friedreich’s ataxia
- Hepatitis C infection
- Hospice patients
- Huntington’s disease
- Inflammatory autoimmune-mediated arthritis
- Intractable nausea/vomiting
- Lewy body disease
- Multiple sclerosis
- Obstructive sleep apnea
- Opioid dependency or other substance abuse disorders
- Painful peripheral neuropathy
- Parkinson’s disease
- Post-traumatic Stress Disorder
- Severe chronic pain
- Spasmodic torticollis
- Spinal cord damage
- Spinal muscular atrophy
- Ulcerative colitis
To qualify, your physician must certify that you have at least one qualifying condition. If your condition is not listed, you may petition for it to be added by following this format and sending it to the NM Department of Health Medical Cannabis Program.
Patients under the age of 18 may also apply to New Mexico’s Medical Cannabis Program as long as they do it with the help and permission of their parents or legal guardians. They are also required to have at least one caregiver.
Those who wish to apply as a primary caregiver in New Mexico must be at least 18 years old and must not have been convicted of certain felonies found in NMAC 7.34.3 rules for Personal Caregiver.
Why should you get a marijuana card in New Mexico
Even though recreational cannabis is legal in New Mexico, a medical marijuana card is the only way minor patients can use cannabis for their conditions legally. Limited amounts of medical cannabis are also exempted from certain taxes.
How to get a medical marijuana card in New Mexico
Applying to New Mexico’s medical marijuana program is fairly simple and can be done completely online or sent via mail. If you are qualified and would like to apply, here are the steps you should follow:
For patients, minor patients, and caregivers
- Consult with a physician licensed to issue a medical marijuana certification in New Mexico. If your condition qualifies, your physician will fill out and sign the Medical Provider section in the Patient Application form. Meanwhile, minor patients have to submit a completed Parental Consent Form for Minors and caregivers and their certifying healthcare provider, the Primary Caregiver Information form and Primary Caregiver Medical Certification form which can be found here.
- Provide a copy of your NM Driver’s license or state ID. If you are a minor applicant, include a Medical Power of Attorney or Legal Guardianship and birth certificate.
- Mail or drop off the requirements and completed forms to:
Department of Health
Medical Cannabis Program
1190 S St. Francis Dr., PO Box 26110
Santa Fe, NM 87502-6110
Department of Health
Medical Cannabis Program
1474 Rodeo Road, Suite 200
Santa Fe, NM 87505
You may also upload all your requirements on the New Mexico MCP portal.
Unlike in most states, there is no charge to apply for or renew a medical marijuana card in New Mexico. After submitting your application, you should get your medical marijuana card within 7 to 10 days if you have been approved.
Frequently Asked Questions on Getting a New Mexico Medical Marijuana Card
Having a New Mexico medical marijuana ID card is the only way minor patients in the state with a debilitating condition will be able to legally use medical marijuana.
Patients in New Mexico who have at least one qualifying condition may apply for a medical marijuana card.
A medical marijuana card is the only way minor patients with a debilitating condition can use cannabis in New Mexico. Getting a NM Patient card is also free and is a good way to get medical marijuana which is exempted from excise tax.
It can take the NM Department of Health 7 to 10 days send your medical marijuana card after reviewing your application.
Aside from the healthcare provider fees, it is free to get a medical marijuana card in New Mexico.
Registered patients in New Mexico may grow up to 4 mature plants and 12 immature ones.
New Mexico’s medical marijuana now allows patients to purchase 8 ounces supply over a 90-day period.
If you’re a patient in New Mexico who needs marijuana for your condition, you may only want to apply to the state’s medical marijuana program if you are a minor or want higher purchase limits. Aside from the healthcare provider fee, it doesn’t cost anything to register for a medical marijuana card and since medical marijuana is exempted from the 12% excise tax, it becomes a more economical option for patients who need a constant supply.