Seniors In Washington D.C. Now Have Easier Access to Medical Marijuana

This story originally appeared on Benzinga

It is about to become much easier for senior citizens to register for medical marijuana in Washington D.C.


Mayor Muriel Bowser has signed a bill into law that will expand access to the District’s medical marijuana program in a series of ways.

For starters, people 65 and older can “self-certify that they will use cannabis for medical purposes in lieu of including a recommendation from their health care practitioner with their registration application as is required for all other applicants,” the administration said.

The law also extends the registration renewal deadline for other patients and creates a week-long medical marijuana tax “holiday” that happens to coincide with 4/20.

And there is Senior Week that will run from Feb. 22 through Feb. 25, the District’s Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration (ABRA) said in a statement.

Walk-in applicants can get their registrations during their visit between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. on each of those days.

RELATED: Seniors Are Using Cannabis More Than Ever in the U.S.

Lower costs, more and longer access

“Senior Week will provide qualifying patients 65 years of age and older with the option to obtain a two-year registration card at no cost,” ABRA director Fred Moosally said in the statement. “We appreciate the steps taken by the D.C. Council to ease the burdens for qualifying patients to access medical cannabis as a result of this emergency legislation.”

Senior Week is part of the Medical Marijuana Patient Access Extension Emergency Amendment Act of 2022, which Mayor Bowser signed into law last week.

There’s more: Patient and caregiver registrations issued through Sept. 30 will be good for two years, which is double the usual term; the registration fees are already waived through April 24 and medical cannabis products purchased at any of D.C.’s seven licensed dispensaries will be exempt from the 6% sales tax.

The emergency legislation is meant to ease logistical burdens for medical marijuana patients and encourage people to get their cannabis from licensed dispensaries, rather than the gray market vendors. 

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