Holiday office closures:
We will be closed: Thanksgiving Week, from November 23rd to December 1st. We will reopen December 2nd, 2015. Christmas Holidays from December 20th through January 1st, 2016, and reopen January 2nd, 2016. Anyone with special circumstances during the Christmas Holiday period may feel free to contact me directly.
With the impending change of the processing method by the DOH, I would recommend to all those patients whose cards expire in December or later that they wait until December First, or thereafter, to reapply, using the online system from home. All patients still need to be seen in the office for the medical visit. The NEW DOH process requires that the physician "sign" the online certification form using a digital signature. The cards will then be mailed directly to the patients' mailing address by the DOH. We will be reducing the office fee to $150 for all patients using the new process. Caregiver cards still require paperwork and will incur a $25 fee to cover those expenses. The usual fee of $175 will be collected for those who do not use the new DOH process.
I have yet to completely understand the new process, so most
of the instructions found on this website will be obsolete starting Dec 1st.
Word from the DOH:
Do not instruct your patients to attempt registration online until AFTER December 1, 2015 – once the new process is launched.
Scottina Malia Ruis, LSW, MBA
Medical Marijuana Program Coordinator
State of Hawaii, Department of Health
For the most current office Clinic Hours and Costs: Preparing for your office visit. https://www.medicalmarijuanaofhawaii.org/clinic-hours-and-costs-preparing-your-office-visit
When contacting me:
The Dept of Health website does not allow any online submissions yet. All submissions must still be made at the medical office. The Department of Health is launching their "online from home" capability on December 1st., instead of this week. We have great hope that this means that the issuance of cards will be much faster. More information to follow. If one does not have access at home, we continue to provide that service by way of the office account.
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PTSD has been recently approved by the DOH to qualify patients for a cannabis license, to accomodate all the military vets with service connected injuries, and combat related conditions.
It should be noted that the Department of Health is processing the registration packets. They are currently 4 to 7 weeks behind in their workload, but they appear to be catching up. They are being ultra critical of all applications, and sending many back for corrections. As I have already noted, EVERYONE filling out the registration materials needs to be extremely careful with the correctness of their information. Once rejected by the DOH, the process for your registration material starts all over, including the time that you wait for your card. We will try to correct your information as needed, but it may require you to return to the clinic for any items missing. This is why I suggest you fill out the forms at home and bring them to the office during your clinic visit, so as to avoid those errors caused by poor or errant handwriting. Patients need to re-apply 2 months before the expiration date.
Cards are mailed out to patients as soon as we get them, in a reasonable and feasible manner. Plus, we are finding out that the USPS mail is a lot slower than we generally think.
Due to the numbers of people waiting for cards, we will no longer be contacting the DOH for status updates before 3 months. We can make sure that the application was sent in and not returned for corrections. But once we know that it is at the DOH, it does no good to check on an application status. The cards come when they come. If you can get through to the DOH, feel free to contact them directly.
For those patients with errors on their applications, it is starting to resemble a few years ago when the state got very behind under the NED. Please be careful and try not to make any errors.
The DOH says that you can't possess medical cannabis or grow until you take possession of your license, so the waiting for the issuance of cards is very important. It affects medical care directly. The law says you only need a medical doctors certifcate, so this is one area that needs to be resolved. As written in law:
Haw. Rev. Stat. Â§ 329-122 : Hawaii Statutes - Section 329-122: Medical use of marijuana; conditions of use.
(a) Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, the medical use of marijuana by a qualifying patient shall be permitted only if:
(1) The qualifying patient has been diagnosed by a physician as having a debilitating medical condition;
(2) The qualifying patient's physician has certified in writing that, in the physician's professional opinion, the potential benefits of the medical use of marijuana would likely outweigh the health risks for the particular qualifying patient; and
(3) The amount of marijuana possessed by the qualifying patient does not exceed an adequate supply.
The issue involves only the use of medical cannabis by patients. One should not have to wait for the state to issue a document in order to receive medical care in the form of medicine. NO WHERE else in medicine are patients required to wait. You are seen by a licensed physician and receive a prescription. Then you go get the medicine at the pharmacy , THAT VERY DAY, if needed. Cancer patients need immediate protection, as they have immediate needs due to chemotherapy and other treatments. Children with severe seizure disorders are being told to wait as well. As a father and grandfather, I can't imagine the distress that this condition causes. There are lots of people who have immediate needs, and the state is making ALL wait for their process. I would be sued for medical malpractice if I forced cancer patients to wait weeks to months for care, without medical cause or reason. Now, It looks like it will require the courts to decide the issue, as we have tried very hard to correct this issue through contacts in the legislature and government. I want to pubicly thank Sen. Wil Espero and Rep Della Belatti for their efforts on patients' behalf.
EVERYONE is free to contact the DOH themselves, and to complain to the governor. I do not know of any quick number into the DOH. The phone number is mostly busy for us too! We are not state employees. If you want to be rude to us for the card delays, we will ask you to go elsewhere for your future needs. We are just as unhappy about the waiting as you are. This is an issue between you and the State of Hawaii Government and the Department of Health.
All I can say is to be careful with the application/ certifications so that it is filled out perfectly with no errors, and to be patient.
Please go to the following links to understand the LATEST ON THE APPLICATION PROCESS:
PLEASE READ THE FOLLOWING AND FILL OUT THE PRACTICE WORKSHEET
The "card registration" process is divided into two parts (really three parts when one includes the doctor visit/interview): The "APPLICANT DATA" part with all the pertinent addresses, FROM THE WORKSHEET, is done online only, AT THE MEDICAL OFFICES ONLY, as is the state fee payment. We do this in the office on the day of your visit. The "fillable PDF" APPLICANT "CERTIFICATIONS" part is done on hardcopy with original signatures, accompanied by your government issued identification, and is submitted by snail mail to the state FROM OUR OFFICE. You can fill them out at home, but you still can't submit anything online from home.
WE NOW REQUIRE that ALL PATIENTS, who have passed the prescreening and those who still qualify and are renewing, to FILL OUT THE ABOVE FORMS AND TO BRING THEM TO THE OAHU OFFICE.
You DO NOT need to have a second physician sign your application. I am your primary care physician as far as your cannabinoid therapy is concerned.
When visiting the Waimanalo office, the village requests that you park outside then gate on the left side to allow the locals access as you wait for the gate to open. Past the gate, drive very slowly to the office. Please be curteous to others, cooperative, and non-aggressive.