Colorado Medical Marijuana Program

Colorado Medical Marijuana State Program

The state health agency shall create and maintain a confidential registry of patients who have applied for and are entitled to receive a registry identification card according to the criteria set forth in this subsection, effective June 1, 1999.

(a) No person shall be permitted to gain access to any information about patients in the state health agency’s confidential registry, or any information otherwise maintained by the state health agency about physicians and primary care-givers, except for authorized employees of the state health agency in the course of their official duties and authorized employees of state or local law enforcement agencies which have stopped or arrested a person who claims to be engaged in the medical use of marijuana and in possession of a registry identification card or its functional equivalent, pursuant to paragraph (e) of this subsection (3). Authorized employees of state or local law enforcement agencies shall be granted access to the information contained within the state health agency’s confidential registry only for the purpose of verifying that an individual who has presented a registry identification card to a state or local law enforcement official is lawfully in possession of such card.

(b) In order to be placed on the state’s confidential registry for the medical use of marijuana, a patient must reside in Colorado and submit the completed application form adopted by the state health agency, including the following information, to the state health agency:

(I) The original or a copy of written documentation stating that the patient has been diagnosed with a debilitating medical condition and the physician’s conclusion that the patient might benefit from the medical use of marijuana;

(II) The name, address, date of birth, and social security number of the patient;

(III) The name, address, and telephone number of the patient’s physician; and

(IV) The name and address of the patient’s primary care-giver, if one is designated at the time of application.

(c) Within thirty days of receiving the information referred to in subparagraphs (3)(b)(I)-(IV), the state health agency shall verify medical information contained in the patient’s written documentation. The agency shall notify the applicant that his or her application for a registry identification card has been denied if the agency’s review of such documentation discloses that: the information required pursuant to paragraph (3)(b) of this section has not been provided or has been falsified; the documentation fails to state that the patient has a debilitating medical condition specified in this section or by state health agency rule; or the physician does not have a license to practice medicine issued by the state of Colorado. Otherwise, not more than five days after verifying such information, the state health agency shall issue one serially numbered registry identification card to the patient, stating:

(I) The patient’s name, address, date of birth, and social security number;

(II) That the patient’s name has been certified to the state health agency as a person who has a debilitating medical condition, whereby the patient may address such condition with the medical use of marijuana;

(III) The date of issuance of the registry identification card and the date of expiration of such card, which shall be one year from the date of issuance; and

(IV) The name and address of the patient’s primary care-giver, if any is designated at the time of application.

(d) Except for patients applying pursuant to subsection (6) of this section, where the state health agency, within thirty-five days of receipt of an application, fails to issue a registry identification card or fails to issue verbal or written notice of denial of such application, the patient’s application for such card will be deemed to have been approved. Receipt shall be deemed to have occurred upon delivery to the state health agency, or deposit in the United States mails. Notwithstanding the foregoing, no application shall be deemed received prior to June 1, 1999. A patient who is questioned by any state or local law enforcement official about his or her medical use of marijuana shall provide a copy of the application submitted to the state health agency, including the written documentation and proof of the date of mailing or other transmission of the written documentation for delivery to the state health agency, which shall be accorded the same legal effect as a registry identification card, until such time as the patient receives notice that the application has been denied.

(e) A patient whose application has been denied by the state health agency may not reapply during the six months following the date of the denial and may not use an application for a registry identification card as provided in paragraph (3)(d) of this section. The denial of a registry identification card shall be considered a final agency action. Only the patient whose application has been denied shall have standing to contest the agency action.

(f) When there has been a change in the name, address, physician, or primary care-giver of patient who has qualified for a registry identification card, that patient must notify the state health agency of any such change within ten days. A patient who has not designated a primary care-giver at the time of application to the state health agency may do so in writing at any time during the effective period of the registry identification card, and the primary care-giver may act in this capacity after such designation. To maintain an effective registry identification card, a patient must annually resubmit, at least thirty days prior to the expiration date stated on the registry identification card, updated written documentation to the state health agency, as well as the name and address of the patient’s primary care-giver, if any is designated at such time.

(g) Authorized employees of state or local law enforcement agencies shall immediately notify the state health agency when any person in possession of a registry identification card has been determined by a court of law to have willfully violated the provisions of this section or its implementing legislation, or has pled guilty to such offense.

(h) A patient who no longer has a debilitating medical condition shall return his or her registry identification card to the state health agency within twenty-four hours of receiving such diagnosis by his or her physician.

(i) The state health agency may determine and levy reasonable fees to pay for any direct or indirect administrative costs associated with its role in this program.