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South Dakota’s MMJ Program Finalized By Lawmakers

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Last month, the Legislature’s Rules Review Committee, who are responsible for approving administration rules for the medical marijuana program, stated that some changes still needed to be made to the program’s proposed regulations. The latest rounds of changes by South Dakota lawmakers have now been finalized.

Newest Rule Changes Under South Dakota’s Medical Cannabis Program

Back in September, the South Dakota Legislatures Rules Review Committee approved 143 of the proposed rules but rejected six of them. They were then sent back to the Department of Health for evaluation and now five of them have been updated with new guidelines.

Old Rule: Initiated Measure 26 initially stated that patients certified to grow their own cannabis at home could have only three plants, unless a physician recommends more. 

New Rule: The newest rules now state if a physician recommends a patient to grow more than three plants, it expires 200 days after the date of the recommendation. It is also required that the physician must specifically state the reasons for the extended plant count.

New Rule: Under the new changes, no medical marijuana cardholder under the age of 21 will be allowed to purchase any form of cannabis flower, including products such as pre-rolls, and possession of any inhalable cannabis products is prohibited.

Other rule changes that were made include requiring product packaging to indicate that an item contains cannabis or cannabis extract that will be used by all registered establishments. Advertising cannabis in any form will also be prohibited unless and until the U.S. DEA removes cannabis as a Schedule I controlled substance.

All of the proposal revisions can be viewed on the South Dakota Department of Health medical-cannabis website.

Instructions on How to Apply for Your Medical Marijuana Card in South Dakota

Step One:

Patient schedules an appointment with their physician.

Step Two:

A determination is made by the physician whether the patient would benefit from the therapeutic or palliative use of medical cannabis for their qualifying condition. If yes, a medical certification is issued through the on-line portal for the patient. Physicians must create an account at medcannabisapplication.sd.gov to provide written certifications. 

Step Three:

Patient receives email to create account on medcannabisapplication.sd.gov. Once compete, the patient must wait for DOH approval.

Step Four: (If Applicable)

Some applications, including minor patient applications, require caregivers to be
registered. Caregivers will receive an email to create an account on medcannabisapplication.sd.gov. Once compete, the caregiver must wait for DOH approval.

Step Five:

Once the patient or caregiver gets DOH approval, a medical cannabis card will be mailed to the patient or caregiver. The cardholder may then purchase cannabis from a certified dispensary.

When Will South Dakota Begin Issuing Medical Marijuana Cards To Patients?

The South Dakota Department of Health must begin issuing medical marijuana cards to registered patients by November 18. Initiated Measure 26 initially required the regulatory framework of the medical marijuana program to be generated within 120 days of its taking effect, or by October 29, and the first medical marijuana cards to patients need to be issued within 140 days, or by November 18. In this case, South Dakota is on track to begin the issuance of cards to patients.

The Department of Health will charge a $75 application fee for medical marijuana cards and will discount the fee to $20 for qualifying low-income patients.

Things to do in South Dakota?How about obtaining your South Dakota Medical Marijuana Card!

Before patients can access a licensed South Dakota dispensary once they open and purchase products, they must first visit a certified physician who can recommend medical marijuana treatment so they can obtain their identification card. In order to qualify for your medical cannabis card, individuals must be at least 18 years or older (patients under 18 years of age must have parental consent), be a South Dakota resident, and have one of the following qualifying medical conditions:

With a South Dakota medical marijuana card, patients can gain access to licensed dispensaries, select from a variety of high quality products at dispensaries, receive medical-grade cannabis that can help with your condition and obtain statutory legal protection.

Documents Required To Get a South Dakota Medical Marijuana Card

Once you schedule an appointment with a certified doctor, there will be a few pieces of documentation you may need to provide in order to get approved for your medical marijuana card. The following may include:

  • A valid ID, state ID, or South Dakota Driver’s License
  • Medical records documenting the diagnosis of your qualifying condition(s) may also be required during the time of your appointment for the doctor to review. 

Once approved by the physician, you will need to submit an application along with your written recommendation from the doctor to the South Dakota Medical Cannabis Program (SDMCP). A non-refundable application fee of $75 ($20 for qualifying low-income patients) must also be submitted at this time in order to have your application reviewed. Once approved, you will be notified by the SDMCP and they will send you an official copy of your identification card so you can begin going to dispensaries.

Are Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Open In South Dakota?

Medical marijuana dispensaries in South Dakota are anticipated to begin opening by 2022 and patients can expect to select from a wide variety of cannabis flower, edibles, vape, topicals, waxes, and more. 

As of October 25, the Department of Health is now accepting Establishment Applications for dispensaries, cultivation and manufacturing facilities to obtain their registration certificates. In the meantime, the state is also creating rules and regulations around how retailers will be issued and continue to possess their licenses for retail. Since the medical marijuana program is finally beginning to roll out, more information regarding dispensary licenses and locations will follow soon. We assume facilities will be located in major cities across South Dakota such as Sioux Falls, Rapid City, Aberdeen, Brookings, and Watertown.

Schedule An Appointment To Qualify For Your South Dakota Medical Marijuana Card

At My Marijuana Cards, we are here to make the process of getting pre-qualified for your medical marijuana card fast and simple! Our team of understanding doctors and knowledgeable patient coordinators are here to assist you every step of the way.

We have telemedicine appointments available so you can meet with one of our doctors right from the comfort of your own home using your computer, phone or tablet. Give us a call at (877) 783-1805 to learn more, or schedule your appointment online today!

If you want to learn more about the South Dakota medical marijuana program, visit our Frequently Asked Questions page or follow our blog to stay up-to-date on the latest news.