Medical marijuana was made legal in Nevada on November 7th, 2000. However, the first medical marijuana dispensaries were not opened until 2015. That’s right: the medical marijuana patients of Nevada had to wait 15 years to be able to access their medicine. This might not have been entirely a bad thing, though, as this meant that the dispensaries that are around in Nevada are of extremely high quality and have rigorous lab testing procedures in place – something other states really ought to think about implementing.
As of November 8, 2016, recreational marijuana became legal in Nevada. As of July 1, 2017, the first recreational sales begin. Interestingly, a Carson City judge ruled that alcohol wholesalers have exclusive rights to pot distribution for 18 months. Distribution licenses do not cover retail, so don’t think that you’ll have to avoid the high-end dispensaries and enter a liquor store in order to get marijuana.
So, now that marijuana is legal for recreational purposes in Nevada, you might be thinking to yourself, “Why should I register for a medical marijuana card?” Well, here are a few good reasons.
1.You Suffer From a Condition that Merits Medical Marijuana …
… The following conditions can qualify you for a medical marijuana card in Nevada:
- Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) / Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)
- Epilepsy, or any other condition that causes seizures
- Multiple Sclerosis (MS), or any other condition that causes persistent muscle spasms
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- Severe nausea
- Severe pain
Like in many other states, a petition must be made and submitted to the Nevada Division of Public and Behavioral Health (NDPBH) in order to get other conditions on the list.
This might sound rather obvious, but if you could qualify for medical marijuana, there’s no good reason not to. Why try and beat the queues at the recreational dispensaries and go to a top-of-the-line medical marijuana dispensary instead?
2. The Freedom
Getting a Nevada medical marijuana card means that you can buy up to 2.5 ounces of cannabis flower every two weeks. Recreational users can buy up to a maximum of 1 ounce of cannabis flower or 3.5 grams of concentrate at a dispensary. Medical marijuana card holders will also be able to grow up to 12 plants if they live more than 25 miles away from a dispensary – which is more restrictive than most other states, but less restrictive than the rules imposed upon recreational users, who cannot grow any. Also, if your local dispensary doesn’t hold the strain you want for your condition, you can still grow even if you’re within the 25 mile limit!
There is more, though. Those with a valid medical marijuana card from Nevada are allowed to use marijuana in Arizona, Delaware, Maine, Michigan, New Hampshire and Rhode Island. Although Nevada MMJ card holders may not be able to buy from a dispensary from these states, at least it means you’re less likely to face a jail cell should you get caught with marijuana whilst travelling through one of these states.
Nevada has one of the freest MMJ programs around, so patients with valid MMJ cards from other states can legally shop at one of Nevada’s medical marijuana dispensaries. Medical marijuana card holders must be 18 years of age or older, whereas recreational users must be aged 21 or over.
3. Price: Quality Ratio
Medical marijuana dispensaries have to lab test all their products. Ensuring that your meds are as pathogen-free (i.e. no mould, bacteria etc.) as possible is of utmost of importance for medical marijuana users. Whether recreational users will have the same quality of marijuana flower or concentrate remains to be seen.
Moreover, those with a valid MMJ card will save themselves 15% on excise tax, meaning they’ll likely get better-quality cannabis for a significantly lower price. This is on top of all the special weekday and happy hour deals that dispensaries put on for medical marijuana patients. Rest assured, there are plenty of reasons why recreational users may look on with envy at medical marijuana users! (Of course, they should be thankful they’re not sick enough to require one for the moment, though they may well do when they’re older and getting rickety knees!)
Technically, you don’t need a MMJ card to buy marijuana legally in Nevada. However, you’ll be saving lots of cash if you do have one, as well as having access to the highest-quality buds around at the moment!