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The South Dakota Medical Cannabis Program

The use of marijuana for medical purposes is permitted in South Dakota. This happened in November 2020 when voters of the state passed Initiated Measure 26. The South Dakota Medical Cannabis Program was launched as a result. And anyone who wants to use medical cannabis for therapeutic purposes should be part of the program.

Here is what you need to know:

You should have a qualifying condition

Your medical condition must be serious or debilitating to use medical cannabis in the state. If your condition produces severe nausea, seizures, chronic pain, severe weight and muscle loss (wasting syndrome) and persistent muscle spasms, it may be considered debilitating by a licensed physician. Examples include multiple sclerosis, epilepsy and cancer. 

You need to obtain a medical cannabis card

If you have a qualifying condition, you should obtain a medical cannabis card to access and use medical marijuana. Your physician will create a certification that states your medical condition and how you will receive therapeutic benefits from the medical use of marijuana. 

This certification will allow you to initiate the patient card application process. You will submit the required medical documentation and a fee during your application.

Note that you should have a bona-fide relationship with the physician – they should have assessed your medical condition and are available to provide follow-up care.

Only purchase at certified establishments

In South Dakota, dispensaries sell medical cannabis, not pharmacies. And the dispensary you obtain marijuana from should be certified. You will provide your medical cannabis card at your chosen dispensary to buy marijuana. 

You should observe the regulations set by the South Dakota Medical Cannabis Program. However, if you are charged with an offense related to medical marijuana, consider getting legal guidance to minimize or suspend the penalties as much as possible.