Yes, medical cannabis is legal in Canada. Under the ACMPR program (Access to Cannabis for Medical Purpose Regulations), Canadian patients who have been authorized to use cannabis for medical purposes by their health care practitioner may access cannabis for medical purposes.
Leaf Wise Rx will assist you with this process. You must register with and order your medical cannabis from a licensed producer authorized by Health Canada. Once you have chosen and registered with a licensed producer, we will send your medical document (prescription) to the licensed producer. After the licensed producer has received and verified your prescription, you can order the medical cannabis and it will be mailed to your home address.
A licensed producer is a grower of medical cannabis who has been issued an official license by Health Canada. Only licensed producers are authorized to produce and sell or provide medical cannabis to eligible persons under the ACMPR program (Access to Cannabis for Medical Purpose Regulations).
The “Medical Document”, is the official term used by Health Canada and is similar to a traditional medical prescription. It contains information about your physician including office address, phone number, and license ID. The document will also contain your contact information (health care number, address, name, DOB, gender and phone number), the prescribed dosage of medical cannabis in grams per day and duration in months.
The licensed producer you register with provides the legal documentation indicating that you are allowed to use and carry medical cannabis. The form is sent to you with your first order and is either a card or a paper document. The prescription label on your medical cannabis container is also admissible proof that you are legally allowed to use and possess medical marijuana.
The cost for medical cannabis varies depending on the licensed producer through which it is purchased. Depending on the strain, it can cost between $6 and $15 per gram.
Medical cannabis qualifies as a medical expense under CRA guidelines. While most insurance companies will not cover medical cannabis under a basic benefits plan, you may be able to claim it under your healthcare spending account.
Generally, you need to be at least 21 years of age and have an officially diagnosed qualifying medical condition for which you have already undergone treatment. For a list of medical conditions please click here.
Leaf Wise Rx accepts patients on a referral basis. Please have your primary care physician complete and fax the referral form prior to your first appointment with our team.
If you are unable to obtain a referral, you may submit your medical file along with a confirmation of diagnosis and list of current medications, which will be reviewed by our team.
For a new user of medical cannabis, it is recommended to start low and go slow, 0.5 to 2 grams per day. This is determined by the physician and is written on your medical document. The physician may gradually increase the dosage during follow-up appointments as your body becomes more accustomed to medical cannabis.
At Leaf Wise Rx, we will work with you to ensure the medical cannabis will not interact negatively with other medicines you may be taking.
In order to continue using medical cannabis over a longer period, you will need to have regular follow-up appointments to review your current prescription and adjust the dosage if necessary. There is no charge to see the doctor at the clinic.
Follow-up appointments are normally scheduled every 3 months. Leaf Wise Rx will contact you to schedule follow-up appointments.
There are possible side effects with medical cannabis use. For example, the strain that you use affects how you react. If you are using a strain with a high THC content, you might experience dry mouth, increased appetite (which can be beneficial for those suffering from weight loss due to illness) and hallucinations.
Low THC (high CBD) strains don’t have as many side effects and are generally not associated with the feeling of being high or hallucinations. The strain you end up choosing is highly linked to your medical condition(s) and reaction to different concentrations of THC and CBD that you feel are most beneficial. The Leaf Wise Rx team will discuss potential side effects with you and answer any questions you may have.
Medical cannabis is approved by Health Canada in dried cannabis and oil forms. Leaf Wise Rx recommends vaporizing or ingesting medical marijuana rather than smoking it. Vaporizing medical cannabis is much gentler and heats the dried marijuana just enough to emit the active ingredients but stays at a low enough temperature to not release the toxic by-products associated with smoking.
You can also use dried medical cannabis or oils to make butter to prepare your own consumables. The form of consumption that is best for you and your specific needs can be discussed with your Leaf Wise Rx team.
Medical cannabis has many active ingredients but the two main and most important cannabinoids are THC (delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol). The components and active ingredients in medical cannabis are covered in your Leaf Wise Rx education session.
Getting your medical cannabis from a licensed producer (LP) is the only legal way to purchase it in Canada. LP’s receive their license from Health Canada and must adhere to strict guidelines which are aimed at controlling the quality of the product and protecting the patient.
The plants that are grown in this environment provide a more consistent and predictable strain for the patient and can be better controlled for content of THC and CBD.
It is legal to use and carry medical cannabis within Canada. Authorization does not extend internationally. Within Canada, you must carry medical cannabis in the container it was shipped in, or in a sealable bag. Ensure you are within possession limits and that you carry the legal proof provided to you by the licensed producer when you placed your order.