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Although the Colorado Medical Marijuana Registry started off in June 2011 posting strong numbers when it came to registered patients, the number of new registered patients began to drop as the year went on. By December, 2011 the registry had posted a nearly 50,000 patient decline. As the New Year began, numbers began to rise again and officials believe it is largely due to the drop in the registry fee from $90 to $35. Since December, approximately 12,800 patients have signed on to the registry. The majority of registry patients are men, at an average age of 42 and inclu8de 46 minors who have their registry card through a parent or guardian. Nearly 55% of all registered Colorado medical marijuana patients have a designated caregiver, which is a 2% drop from February of this year. The Registry also shows that approximately 500 patients were put on a six-month waiting list due to various reasons such as seeing a physician’s assistant instead of a doctor and the Colorado Medical Marijuana Registry is expecting an increase in registered patients once that six-month period has been completed.
According to sources last year, the Colorado Medical Marijuana Registry was in a severe slump, suffering from a radical drop in the amount of patients applying for a card. As of the end of January 2012, however, this slump seems to have turned around, posting an increase of nearly 3,000 patients. Most of the statistics remained the same though. The average patient age remained at 42, while women accounted for only 32% of the registry patients. The largest number comes from people registering someone else as their caregiver. There are currently at least 10,000 registered caregivers in the state of Colorado. Although the state experienced this rise in patients in January, they are still approximately 43,500 patients below the peak enrollment recorded in June 2011. Many patients have cited privacy concerns when it comes to renewing their cards, stating a dislike for the intrusion of their privacy regarding buying habits and quantities, while others had their applications denied and have been forced to wait six months before reapplying. The CDPHE stated that their primary focus during the next few months will be to process applications within the 35 day window rather than keeping the website updated due to the smaller number of people they currently have in employment.
After reading Mr Suthers Huffington blog post, it is our opinion that Mr Suthers has been greatly misinformed as to the state of the medical marijuana community in Colorado. Mr Suthers please, put patients before politics, and certainly put patients before paranoia.
Our company (CMM) Colorado Medical Marijuana LLC (not a dispensary) has assisted thousands of patients with the application and registration process for the Colorado Medical Marijuana Registry. Has anyone asked a company like ours what the patients needs are and what the majority of Colorado’s medical marijuana patients seek in new legislation. Senator Romer understands the importance of sifting through myth and finding some truth. His suggestion to get the patients to participate in the medical marijuana debate is crucial.
When the founders of (CMM) were interested in becoming medical marijuana patients they had to call over 50 doctors in Colorado before they could find one doctor that was wiling to recommend marijuana as medicine. This is the reason (CMM) was created. This is also the reason that only 5 doctors are responsible for 80% of the medical marijuana recommendation s in the state. There are thousands of patients in Colorado seeking relief and finding the same dead ends.
Fortunately there are good doctors (checking and reviewing records) that understand the need to incorporate a variety of weapons into the pain management arsenal. Our partner doctors will not recommend marijuana to patients that do not have a qualifying condition but they rarely have to deny a patient. The reason is fairly simple; we prescreen clients and request records. This simple procedure is all that is needed to safeguard good patient’s rights to use medical marijuana. Mr Suthers, please contact us and let us show you the evidence that good doctors and ethical business owners exist within the emerging medical marijuana community.
Some politicians have suggested that they redefine the doctor patient relationship and what constitutes a bonafide relationship. They have suggested that patients should be wheeled down or limp into the nearest doctor’s office multiple times to receive a card. This is very painful and costly for most qualified patients. Qualified patients have turned to medical marijuana as a last resort in treating their debilitating and chronic medical conditions in hopes of living a normal life. No, the answer is not to require these poor and debilitated patients to spend extra days and money they do not have, in and out of the doctor’s office.
Qualified patients have enough problems in life and the process to get a medical marijuana recommendation and card is already difficult and expensive. On Monday our office received a call from recent cancer widow. She told us that her husband applied for a card, paid to get a physicians recommendation to use medical marijuana, had his application notarized and paid a fee of $90 to Colorado Medical Marijuana Registry (CDPHE). He died before his ID card came and he never even knew that the doctor’s signature was all that was needed to use marijuana legally. He was trying to be a good and law abiding citizen waiting for his medical marijuana card to come in the mail (Currently delayed 14 to 16 weeks).
Mr Suthers, doctors do not prescribe medical marijuana, a drug that is safer than cough syrup. Doctors may only recommend marijuana. Mr. Suthers consider your quote “Can you imagine any other drug or treatment where a doctor is directly incentivized to prescribe a specific treatment method? The public would be outraged if a drug company were effectively paying a doctor in cash to prescribe their product”. No Mr Suthers, we do not have to imaging because we see it every day with the nation’s pharmaceutical companies and our states practicing physicians. They might not exchange cash directly but exchanges are being made.. Patients are sick and tired of the Reefer Madness and tired and sick from the deadly synthetic chemicals they are prescribed with out any fanfare or responsibility. Mr Suthers, please call us and get some of the facts that you will need in these upcoming weeks. Multiple doctor visits with needless poking and prodding is not the answer, good records straight from one MD or DO to another MD or DO are the answer.
Applicants who are trying to obtain Colorado medical marijuana cards may have recently had their applications returned to them due to simple, avoidable mistakes made when filling out the required forms. According to the Colorado Medical Marijuana Registry, they are returning large amounts of application packets and change request forms due to easily avoidable mistakes. Applicants can prevent the problem by following a checklist of basic items to remember.
Following these simple guidelines should help patients to obtain their Colorado medical marijuana cards quickly and easily, and avoid any delays.
The biggest barrier to gaining access to the Colorado medical marijuana registry is most likely to be cost. Because there are no general funds allotted to the program, users are required to pay around $100 in fees to be a registered user. Also, all applications, renewals and requests for change must be submitted as a hard papery copy via mail, with changes made in blue ink and must include a copy of the patient’s Colorado identification.
Not all applications will be accepted, however. Recently, four applications were denied due to lack of scientific evidence that medical marijuana usage provided any beneficial effect. Among those rejected were cases of Parkinson’s Disease, Asthma, Anxiety and Bi-Polar Disorder. Although acceptance is carefully screened, Colorado has currently used over 6,700 registry ID cards. The renewal rate is 56 percent.