For many years, the purpose and uses for medical marijuana, or cannabis, continues to strike a concern for citizens throughout the United States.
“Medical marijuana helps with pain for cancer or anxiety, it helps relax you,” said New Mexico Medical Cannabis Patients Alliance member and volunteer Larry Brooks. “Depending on the condition, it helps in various ways.”
According to http://www.medicalmarijuana.com, medical marijuana is used as a natural treatment for medical conditions such as cancer, glaucoma, insomnia, arthritis, back pain and depression.
The process of receiving medical marijuana starts with a patient who has a medical condition that qualifies who is then responsible for filling out an application given to a doctor. The doctor then signs an approval for the application, and submits it to the New Mexico Department of Health.
Once the application is approved, the patient receives a card. The patient needs identification and the card to purchase the medical marijuana from producers who are marijuana growers. The marijuana is available in various forms from liquids to concentrates, oils and edibles, Brooks said. The producers have a mandatory testing for the product, to make sure it is a good quality medicine, he said.
The patient can’t exceed their intake of the 150 limit use of medical marijuana plants for their medical condition, Brooks said. If the patient wanted to grow their own medical marijuana, with limitations and restrictions, they would have to fill out another application, which needs approval by the New Mexico Department of Health. If approved, the patient will receive a license that will cost as much as nothing to $30, depending on the patient’s income, Brooks said.
According to Brooks, the New Mexico Medical Cannabis Patients Alliance is a non-profit patient-centric organization dedicated to providing New Mexican residents an open forum for cannabis information therapy. Brooks has been in the organization for two months, along with two other members who started the non-profit alliance for prospective patients in Bernalillo County six months ago.
“We have an established, successful program,” Brooks said.
Since the non-profit organization was formed, there are a total of 210 members, he said. The goal of the organization is to educate and offer resources for its members about medical marijuana and its use, Brooks said.
Currently meetings are held once a month in Albuquerque where they meet in a facility and have guest speakers and a forum with general discussions. The meetings also inform patients about services available for them, such as doctor referrals.
It’s an educational and social organization, he said.
According to Brooks, there are 8,900 registered medical marijuana members in New Mexico. The central Albuquerque organization is in an alliance with the extended neighbors of Farmington, Grants and Gallup, and Brooks is currently working on establishing a medical marijuana organization in Torrance County, he said. There are 17 legal medical marijuana states — Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Maine, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, D.C. and Washington. For more information about New Mexico Medical Cannabis Patients Alliance go to the website at http://www.nm-mcpa.org or contact Larry Brooks 505-507-8665.
“We are involved to improve medicine and the program, It’s nothing to be ashamed about,” Brooks said.