As of July 30th, 2020, the Pennsylvania Department of Health released new policy guidelines for Medical cannabis patients on how to renew the PAMMJ program identification card:
The wording on the announcement did not clearly state the change from the prior policy for Pa patients; We contacted the Department of Health for clarification and received the following:
This removes only one step from the prior process, yet remains a step in the correct direction.
HOW TO RENEW YOUR PATIENT ID
(The following steps are taken directly from the Pennsylvania Department of Health website)
“You will need to obtain an annual patient certification from a certified physician. 60 days before the expiration date of your patient certification and ID card, you will receive an email letting you know that it is time to obtain a new patient certification.
You can get a patient certification from any registered practitioner. You do not have to see the same doctor who issued your initial patient certification.
Once the doctor certifies you, if your annual payment is up to date, a new card will be printed and mailed to you at the address listed in your patient portal under ‘profile settings’. Please log into your account using the following link: https://padohmmp.custhelp.com/app/loginOpens In A New Window. Log in as a returning user and confirm the address is correct.
The new card will start after the expiration date of the original card. You should continue to use your current card until the renewal card’s issue date.
Payments are not tied to the ID card and are instead made annually. 30 days before your annual renewal fee is due, you will receive an email with instructions for making the $50 payment (or $25 if you qualify for a fee reduction). This fee is paid once every 12 months, regardless of how many cards/certifications you may be issued. Be sure to watch for this email and pay the annual fee by the due date listed to avoid any lapse in card activation.“
THE PA MMJ CARD RENEWAL PROCESS: SIMPLIFIED
1. At 60 days prior to the expiration date of your card, start looking for the best price renewal in your area. There are usually events across the state that offer $50 renewals to existing Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana program patients. Your local dispensary may be an excellent resource: some even sponsor these programs at their locations directly.
Note: Any price charged over $50 for a certification renewal by a physician or practice is considered unethical by this publication. (If you are uncertain if there is a reasonable priced physician or certification event near you, contact me and I may be able to help.)
2. At 30 days prior to your card expiration date, you should receive and email from the Department of Health with instructions on how to pay your yearly $50 card fee to the state of Pennsylvania.
3. After you pay your fee, print out your receipt and visit the doctor/registration event of your choice to receive your medical recertification. Please bring your most recent documentation of your qualifying conditions from your primary doctor or specialist. I have found that simply bringing the discharge summary from my most recent appointment is sufficient: That usually has a list of current diagnosis’, a full list of current prescriptions, as well as basic health indicators such as blood pressure, pulse, weight, and allergies already detailed which not only saves time, but could better advise cannabis-educated physicians which products may provide the most symptom relief.
4. During your visit with the recertification doctor, they will ask you questions about your qualifying conditions and experience in the MMJ program so far. They may take some basic vitals and ask about how you utilize medical cannabis to alleviate your symptoms. They may also provide suggestions about how to more effectively medicate for your conditions and possibly recommend potentially helpful strains and/or products to try. (However, this is a bonus: not necessarily the norm.)
5. In theory, If your fee to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is paid up-to-date and the doctor correctly recertifies you in the state database system, your new card should arrive within 7-10 business days from the date of your recertification appointment. Keep your receipts from every step of the process just in case; It never hurts to be prepared.
Considering this new policy has existed less than a week, please contact us if you encounter any difficulties. Good luck, and medicate safely!✨