Medical card, cannabis card, weed license, recommendation, prescription, 420 card—call it what you want—it’s a written, certified doctor’s consent to legally purchase and consume medical cannabis to treat your condition or ailment. While there are a handful of online medical marijuana health care services that allow you to get a cannabis card without leaving your home, not all are created equal.
NuggMD has changed the perception of and approach to getting a medical marijuana card here in California. No longer do you have to research a “420 doctor near me,” compare prices, travel (possibly to a shady part of town), wait, then see a “doctor” who isn’t as informed as he or she should be and finally pay a hefty fee for an evaluation—only to find you have pay another sizable one for the actual recommendation.
Just follow these simple steps to get your 420 MMJ recommendation and/or card online.
STEP 1: MEET THE REQUIREMENTS FOR A 420 DOCTOR CONSULTATION
Before contacting an accredited 420 doctor online, first make sure you qualify under these conditions:
- Must be age 18 or older.
- Have valid proof of identification (California driver’s license, passport or other state-issued photo ID).
- Have a legitimate, qualifying medical condition (varies by state). In California, these include (but not limited to): chronic pain, cancer, AIDS, arthritis, seizures, muscle spasms, nausea, migraines, PTSD and any other illness that marijuana provides relief.
STEP 2: VISIT THE WEBSITE
Simply visit NuggMD via your desktop, laptop, tablet or smartphone to have a face-to-face or phone 420 evaluation (it’s up to you) with a qualified, knowledgeable cannabis doctor in minutes.
If you’re weary about providing your health info online or just have detailed questions about the process, NuggMD lets you first speak with a 420 medical doctor prior to signing up. Once on the site, a large, live chat bubble will pop up on the right side of your screen where a certified California doctor will quickly answer any and all questions and concerns.
Seriously, ask anything you want, all doctors and 420 physician assistants employed by NuggMD are there to help guide you through what can normally be an intimidating process. It’s their personal mission to make sure you feel comfortable and have all the information you need while setting out on your cannabis journey.
STEP 3: FILL OUT THE MMJ APPLICATION
Create an account, then fill out a brief medical evaluation form just as you would at any doctor’s office, providing your name, date of birth, and postal and email addresses. You’ll also give specific health information that will help assess and treat your condition/s. If you think it would help your 420 doctor make a more informed diagnosis, you can upload your official medical records from your primary physician (totally optional). This information is completely confidential, HIPAA compliant and will not be found on any public record or database.
After completing the medical questionnaire and uploading any personal records, you’ll be asked to upload or take a photo of your ID, which can be a driver’s license or passport, from ANY state. It’s actually a misinterpretation of California law that makes so many people believe they have to be a permanent California resident to get a medical cannabis recommendation. The only legal restriction is that your recommendation is only valid for use within California, but as long as you’re a U.S. citizen, you’ll be able to get one!
Additionally at this step, if you opt for the package that includes a medical cannabis ID card (issued by NuggMD for an extra $20), you’ll be asked to take a photo of your face, which will be printed onto your medical marijuana ID card. If you opt just for the recommendation, pay the small $39 fee by Visa or Mastercard (insurance will not cover it), and you’re all set for your 420 evaluations!
STEP 4: CONSULT WITH A 420 DOCTOR FOR 5-10 MINUTES
Patients who qualify will meet with one of NuggMD’s certified, caring, knowledgeable 420 doctors via live video who will evaluate your situation in 10 minutes or less. You’ll discuss your current condition/s, medical history and how medical marijuana might help relieve your pain. While visiting some medical marijuana doctors can be an intimidating and even a frightening experience, the friendly physicians at NuggMD make you feel comfortable as soon as your evaluation begins. Note the consultation is free since you won’t be charged unless you’re doctor approved!
STEP 5: RECEIVE A RECOMMENDATION FROM YOUR 420 DOCTOR
Upon approval, you’ll immediately receive a temporary digital PDF copy of your doctor’s recommendation via email, which you can use the same day by printing it out (showing it on your smartphone won’t do). Be aware however that most dispensaries require the official paper copy, so call ahead to find out if this version will suffice. Luckily, you won’t have to worry about this when you order from nearby marijuana dispensaries found on Nugg’s online cannabis delivery marketplace, as you’ll already be in the system and will automatically receive $20 credit on your first order!
Two to three days later, you’ll receive your official signed and sealed recommendation letter in the mail, containing your name, patient identification number and expiration date along with a doctor’s signature and an embossed seal. Beware, as some other 420 doctor evaluation services won’t provide the raised seal on your recommendation, which although is not required under California law, is expected by almost all dispensaries.
STEP 6: RECEIVE A MEDICAL MARIJUANA CARD (OPTIONAL)
If you value your anonymity the recommendation alone allows you to purchase medical cannabis from any cannabis dispensary/club in California. But once you have it, you can also enroll in California’s Medical Marijuana Identification Card Program (MMICP).
There’s really no difference between a laminated medical marijuana card and a doctor’s recommendation letter. The card is an optional extra step that requires the doctor’s rec. It includes your picture, name, patient identification number, issue date (depending on the provider) and expiration date, which can decrease problems with police as they can easily confirm you’re a legal patient. Plus it’s more convenient than carrying a bulky folded doctor’s rec in your wallet. Know that not all medical cards are officially issued by the state; some are produced right in doctors’ offices, while others are from online evaluators.
As mentioned briefly in Step 3, NuggMD offers a medical cannabis card for an additional $20 (getting a medical marijuana card renewal costs the same), which you can purchase by selecting the appropriate package before submitting your payment information. This is NO different in the eyes of the law or when trying to access a cannabis dispensary than if you were to get your card issued by the state—and given that it’s much cheaper and more convenient to go through a service like NuggMD, there’s really no reason to use the state’s outdated method.
In fact, many would argue that having your weed license and card issued by the 420 doctor you see is preferable, since your patient-status won’t be publicly accessible, whereas if you opt to receive your card through California’s state program, you will be found on a public list, which is accessible by both law enforcement and potential employers.
If for whatever reason you do choose to go with the state program, the California Medical Marijuana Identification Card (MMIC) cost is $33 for Medi-Cal patients and $66 for non Medi-Cal patients, plus an administration fee and possibly other fees, which vary by county. Like your doctor’s rec, you must also renew the medical card every year.
Once submitted, your local county has 30 days to verify the application, though it may take less, as long as you provide all the required info. Once verified, they’ll send your medical marijuana card within five days.
If your application is denied, you can file an appeal with the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) within 30 days from the denial date at no cost.
Once you have your doctor’s recommendation and/or cannabis card, you can purchase medical cannabis personally from nearby dispensaries (there’s no cap on the number of dispensaries you can register with) or order your medicine online via sites like getnugg.com and have it brought directly to your home. Who would have thought the day would ever come where you could browse anything from cannabis tinctures to vape cartridges online and have it delivered!
Remember that possession laws vary by city and county. Here in California, you can technically have as much medical cannabis as needed for treatment; but you can be arrested if you’re found holding an excessive amount (over eight ounces) and be fined for exceeding local law. You can also grow up to six mature plants or 12 immature plants, though recently the California Supreme Court ruled that patients can grow any number of plants necessary to satisfy their medical needs.
Note: While Proposition 215 is still in effect and protects the rights offered to medical marijuana patients, it’s good to understand what Prop 64 entails, the recent recreational marijuana law that was passed.
And never forget that under federal law, medical cannabis remains illegal, so you can still be arrested for mass possession, sale or cultivation, though the feds insist they won’t pursue individual patients.
Abide by the law and these easy steps, or read more about how to get a medical marijuana card ,and you’ll be on your way to becoming a legal California cannabis patient in no time!
FIND A 420 DOCTOR NEAR ME
If you’ve been reading closely (or even skimming) throughout this article, it should be as clear as a California day that the preferred method for patients to see a 420 doc and get a medical marijuana recommendation/card in the Sunshine State is to complete the entire process online.
It’s quick, easy, 100 percent legal thanks to California’s telehealth laws and the quality of care your receive through a medical evaluations service like NuggMD is in fact better than if you were to visit a crowded 420 clinic, where their primary goal is to get you in and out as fast as possible.
But if for whatever reason you do feel compelled to visit an in-person doctor and earn your recommendation that way, here’s a host of medical marijuana evaluations near me locations throughout California.
420 Doctors on Melrose (Los Angeles)
7324 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90046
420 Evaluations San Jose
1661 Burdette Dr, San Jose, CA 95121
The City 420 Doctor San Francisco
1932 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94103
420 Doctor Sacramento
1800 21st St #100, Sacramento, CA 95811
420 Evaluations Oakland
2633 Telegraph Ave #109, Oakland, CA 94612