Although recreational marijuana is legal in Colorado, medical marijuana remains the most cost-effective of the two. If you have a chronic debilitating condition that can be treated with marijuana it is a good idea to apply for a red card.

How to get a red card in Colorado

First, see if you qualify:

Per the Colorado constitution, medical marijuana may be recommended for the following:
 Cancer
 Glaucoma
 HIV or AIDS positive
OR …
The patient has a chronic or debilitating disease or medical condition that produces one or more of the
following and which, in the physician’s professional opinion, may be alleviated by the medical use of
marijuana.
 Cachexia
 Persistent muscle spasms
 Seizures
 Severe nausea
 Severe pain

If you suspect you may qualify, its time to get a doctor’s opinion. I went to my personal doctor first to show the chronic nature off my condition. After that it was time to see one of the many doctors in Colorado specializing in medical marijuana. Check here to find a Doctor near you. When you come in for your appointment be sure to remember your (non expired) identification.

Appointment placed and children with the sitter, I found myself in the first waiting room filling out paperwork, including the application that is sent to the state, and the certified mail form for the post office later.

After filling out the forms and having my drivers license copied, I sit with a notary public who looks over and notarizes my application. Next, a second waiting room, where the television was playing videos on growing pot. I sat in my housewife attire across from a stoned looking hippie and waited, texting my girlfriend for moral support.

When the doctor called me I followed her to her office, where we sat at a desk across from one another. She went over my paperwork and then asked me some questions about my health history and nausea. She briefly listened to my breathing and felt my abdomen. I sat in silence as she filled out the physician certificate and then I was taken to a third waiting room. Here I have a brief exit interview where they show me exactly how to proceed. My completed  and notarized application and physician certification are all placed in an envelope pre-addressed to the registry office and paper-clipped with the certified postal form. Copies of my paperwork went together into a folder and were given to me.

The next step is to take my envelope to the post office. The application must be sent certified mail. The state has a $15 application fee so I added a check to the CDPHE (Colorado Department of Public Heath and environment) and off it all goes to the state. Paper clip both postal receipts to the copies of your application and physician certification and that all becomes your temporary shopping papers.

Colorado red card

The Red Card!

You can only shop for marijuana with these papers for 35 days, Monday-Friday, 9:00-5:00. Once your Medical Marijuana Registration card (red card) arrives you can shop any day and hour you choose. My red card arrived before my temporary papers had expired.

Here is the website for the Colorado Medical Marijuana Registry.

And here is the application process via CDPHE.