One valuable feature of Massachusetts’ medical cannabis program is the allowance of up to two caregivers per medical patient. This means that each registered patient can choose up to two other adults who can visit RMDs and make purchases in their stead.
Why would you need a caregiver? Since the qualifying conditions to become a patient are so wide-ranging, some even debilitating, patients aren’t always able to make the physical journey to Ermont or other dispensaries. Caregivers can also ease the stress of work or child care schedules that interfere with operating hours, especially since state regulations prohibit anyone without a card from entering an RMD building, in particular minors.
Caregivers are often a patient’s spouse, parent or sibling, but as long as you trust them to make informed decisions for you at a dispensary and they are over the age of 21, who they are is at your discretion. Acquiring and registering a caregiver is a worthwhile process with no additional cost, and it’s actually much easier than becoming a patient. All it takes is a few visits to your Mass CIP Portal, which we talked about in a previous post.
As a patient, sign in to your CIP Portal account and use the link on the top right titled “My Caregivers.” On that page, use the “Generate Pin” button to receive a six-digit pin. You then hand that pin over to your designated caregiver, and they use it to register their own Caregiver account in the Portal. Once that is complete, log back into your account and use the same “My Caregivers” link to approve them. Following this, it is just a waiting game as the CCC verifies the registration and sends them a MA Caregiver card.
Much like you, your personal caregiver(s) will have to renew annually. They cannot make purchases for you if either your patient registration or certification is expired. Your ten-ounce weight limit applies to their purchases as well as yours. Make sure your caregiver is someone you can communicate your needs to and hopefully can pivot should a specific product be unavailable; a lot of patients will initially bring them along on a visit to get an idea of what their patient is looking for from an RMD. At Ermont, our PSAs are always happy to talk you or your caregiver through our menu to match you with products best applicable to your needs.