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How Medical Marijuana Card Reciprocity Works

Medical Card Reciprocity,Cannabis Laws,Traveling With Marijuana

If you’re a medical marijuana patient or are interested in getting your card, you’ve probably wondered whether or not you can legally use your card in other states to purchase cannabis products from a dispensary.  Have you heard the term “medical marijuana card reciprocity” before? In this article, we’ll explain how it works, and what it means for patients when they travel.

Today, there are many states that allow medical marijuana patients to use out-of-state cards. And the good news is that the number of states that allow visitors to use their cards in dispensaries is increasing. This is known as “reciprocity.” 

If you plan to travel to a state that offers medical marijuana reciprocity, you’ll want to find out the details of what they allow. Even though a state may provide reciprocity, there still may be additional purchase or possession-only laws, as well as purchase and possession limits.

States That Accept Out-of-State Medical Marijuana Cards

As mentioned above, reciprocity entails one state’s acceptance of a medical marijuana card obtained in another state. When visiting one of these states, an individual who possesses a medical marijuana card will not be prosecuted for possession of marijuana as long as they follow the laws that are enforced in that state. 

Traveling with medical marijuana
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To date, the following states and territories offer out-of-state medical marijuana card reciprocity:

  • Arizona
  • Arkansas
  • Hawaii
  • Maine
  • Michigan
  • Nevada
  • New Hampshire
  • New Mexico
  • Oklahoma
  • Puerto Rico
  • Rhode Island
  • Washington, DC

It is very important to research the cannabis laws in the state you plan to visit. Some states have not legalized medical cannabis, and if there is no reciprocity agreement in place, non-resident patients are not legally protected. That means the risk of a misdemeanor or felony charge for possession of a controlled substance.

Common Qualifying Conditions for Medical Marijuana

Medical marijuana can be used to help with a variety of symptoms and health conditions. Patients receive a recommendation after a health evaluation with a licensed physician, who will advise the patient on creating a wellness treatment plan.

Epilepsy and Other Seizure Disorders

Epilepsy is considered to be one of the most common non-communicable neurological diseases, and approximately one-third of patients with epilepsy have seizures that are resistant to traditional antiepileptic medications. Numerous studies have been done on cannabis’s potential to help manage seizures for years.


Epilepsy travel with medical cannabis
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Several researchers have proposed that cannabinoids and endocannabinoids directly inhibit tumor growth both in vitro and in animal tumor models through many different pathways. The inhibition of tumor growth and progression of several types of cancers have been demonstrated by natural and synthetic cannabinoids, endocannabinoids, endocannabinoid analogs, endocannabinoid transport inhibitors, and endocannabinoid degradation inhibitors. These include cancers such as glioma, glioblastoma, colon carcinoma, thyroid cancer, breast cancer, prostate cancer, leukemia, and lymphoid tumors.

Inflammatory Bowel Diseases

Studies are also suggesting that patients suffering from inflammatory bowel diseases such as ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease could benefit from marijuana use. In 2010, researchers at the University of Nottingham found that various cannabinoids interact with cells in the body. And some play an important role in gut function and immune responses. 

The body makes compounds similar to THC that increase the intestines’ permeability, allowing bacteria in. The cannabinoids in marijuana block these compounds, making the intestinal cells bond together tighter and become less permeable. In simpler terms, cannabis helps block off bacteria and other compounds that cause inflammation in the intestines.


Studies have shown that marijuana disturbs sleep cycles by interrupting the later stages of REM sleep. Nightmares and other dreams occur during specific phases of the sleep cycle, so interrupting this REM sleep prevents dreams from happening. 

For those people suffering from chronic nightmares, especially those associated with PTSD, this can be helpful, perhaps in the short term. Nightmares and other dreams occur during those same stages of sleep. By interrupting REM sleep, many of those dreams may not occur. Research using a synthetic cannabinoid similar to THC showed a significant decrease in the number of nightmares in patients with PTSD. 

Become a Medical Marijuana Patient Today

A full list of qualifying conditions for a medical marijuana recommendation in Florida, Ohio, and Texas can be found here. If you are not already a medical marijuana patient but believe you could benefit from it, schedule an appointment with one of our licensed medical marijuana doctors online today!


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