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Acquiring a marijuana medical card involves many steps and fees

Reported by: Vicki Gonzalez
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Updated: 3/08/2014 8:43 am
LAS VEGAS (KSNV & MyNews3) -- The medical marijuana program is gaining traction.

The latest numbers show nearly 5,000 patients in the state -- an overwhelming majority, around 3,500 in Clark County -- and that's expected to grow.

There is a process to qualify for a Nevada medical marijuana registry card.

Vicki Higgins is a board member for "WE CAN" -- which stands for "Wellness, Education, Cannabis Advocates of Nevada."

"The patient numbers have increased dramatically," Higgins said.

One the non-profit's goals is breaking down the lengthy steps to register for the state medical marijuana program.

 "It's a little more detailed," Higgins said. "They are seeing the problems in other states -- the little pitfalls, the things that hadn't been thought of."

The process begins with sending a written request to the Nevada division of health. A state licensed physician needs to approve the qualifying disease before the applicant is issued a formal application.

Once that happens, the applicant gets fingerprinted and a physician signs the application, which must then be notarized and sent back to the state. 

If approved, a temporary certification is mailed to the applicant, who then takes it to the DMV to receive a registry identification card valid for one year.

"At that point you're good to go,” Higgins said, adding that although the entire process can take less than two months, one of the biggest challenges is the cost.

From the initial request to the physician, fingerprints, sending the completed registration, and finally being issued the card-- it can add up.
“You're looking at least $300. It could go up to $500,” Higgins said.

Higgins says after April 1, the application request as well as registration and renewal costs will be cut in half.

A town hall meeting on medical marijuana will be held Wednesday at the Clark County Government Center for anyone interested in applying for an ID card.

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