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  • Jordan T. Smith

How Medical Marijuana Has Changed in the US Since it Was First Legalized in 1996

If you haven’t been paying close attention, you may have missed the news that medical marijuana in the United States has been around for a quarter-century as of this November. The movement that got its start in California eventually led to Ohio residents being eligible for medical marijuana starting in 2017, and now patients diagnosed with any one of 25 qualifying conditions are getting natural relief through cannabis.

The strides taken within the cannabis industry since the beginning have been nothing short of remarkable, and the changes we are seeing now are a direct result of a small group of people banding together to fight for legal access to the plant medicine we all deserve.

Since medical marijuana has been around for so long, there’s no time like the present to take a look at the overall impact of medical marijuana on society since its inception. A few ways medical marijuana has made its presence felt include:

A Change in the Stigma of Cannabis Use

Once upon a time, it was nearly impossible for most people to distinguish cannabis use apart from the use of other Federally banned substances.

Lumping marijuana in with other substances that are Federally banned because of their high risk of abuse and their lack of medicinal value created a harmful stigma that prevented people from trying one of the most valuable plant medicines on the planet today.

Fortunately, the idea of medical marijuana transforming the once upstanding, gainfully employed citizen into the adolescent lazy stoner is mostly a thing of the past, and more and more people are giving it a try.

Even though it can still be a topic of contentious debate, medical marijuana has begun to carve out a permanent place as a serious treatment option for patients. Marijuana as a legitimate medicine is starting to gain support in the scientific community, and it is becoming one of the preferred methods for managing conditions like chronic pain and PTSD.

The Door Was Opened for More Medical Marijuana Research than Ever Before

Since cannabis is still a Federally banned substance, the amount of research that can be conducted on it is limited. The limits in terms of the research that could be conducted on cannabis prior to California’s passage of Proposition 215 were even more stringent. In fact, research and testing of cannabis is so strict that for several decades, the only cannabis that scientists were allowed to study came directly from the government itself.

All government-approved research on the benefits of medical marijuana came directly from the campus of the University of Mississippi. The basis for whether or not the DEA allows an entity to grow and research cannabis is still strict, and favors those who have proven experience working with controlled substances in the past.

The DEA began inviting growers outside of the University of Mississippi to research medical marijuana back in 2016, on the heels of California legalizing cannabis for recreational use.

Medical Marijuana Legalization Created the Path for Recreational Cannabis Use

Recreational cannabis first entered the fray nationally in 2012 when Colorado and Washington legalized it for both possession and sale. Since then cannabis legalization has taken the nation by storm, as currently 20 states have laws allowing for adults 21 and older to possess and buy cannabis legally including New York, New Jersey, South Dakota, Montana and Maine.

Many of the experts involved with the original fight to pass Prop 215, allowing for citizens to purchase marijuana to overcome health ailments say they believe their contributions are directly responsible for the widespread legalization of cannabis that states are moving forward with today.

Although full federal legalization of marijuana—and even recreational legalization in Ohio—is probably inevitable, there’s nothing set in stone yet. That means Ohio residents who are interested in treating their medical ailments using medical marijuana need to obtain their medical marijuana card in order to do so legally.

Since marijuana is still a Federally illegal schedule 1 substance, it’s crucial for Ohio residents to understand the consequences they face for seeking to obtain or use medical marijuana without a card from a state-certified physician.

Millions Have Been Able to Experience the Benefits of Medical Marijuana Firsthand - You Can Too by Obtaining Your Ohio Medical Marijuana Card Today!

The impact medical marijuana has had on patients nationwide since its inception a quarter-century ago is immense. Since medical marijuana was introduced, patients with conditions ranging from Cancer and HIV, to chronic pain conditions like Arthritis, have found a safe, natural alternative treatment for their symptoms.

Fortunately, patients in Ohio who are living with a variety of medical conditions that can be treated with cannabis are able to purchase medical marijuana at a local dispensary after receiving a recommendation from a state-certified physician.

The process for getting a medical marijuana card is simple. Representatives are available to answer any questions about Ohio’s medical marijuana program 6 days a week, so if you or a loved one have been considering using medical marijuana as an alternative to using over the counter or prescription medications, there’s no reason to wait.

Same-day appointments are available, so visit us online today to book an appointment to receive your medical marijuana card as soon as possible.


Doctors Who Care.

Relief You Can Trust.

Here at Ohio Marijuana Card, our goal is to help everyone achieve wellness safely and conveniently through increased access to medical marijuana. Our focus on education, inclusion, and acceptance will reduce the stigma for our patients by providing equal access to timely information and compassionate care.

If you have any questions, call us at (866) 457-5559, or simply book a medical marijuana evaluation to start getting relief you can trust today!

Check out Ohio Marijuana Card’s Blog to keep up to date on the latest medical marijuana news, tips, and information. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to join the medical marijuana conversation in Ohio.


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