New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission's landmark decision dramatically reduces costs for patients and caregivers, setting a new course for accessible cannabis treatment.
NEW JERSEY - In a decisive move to enhance accessibility to medical cannabis, the New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission (NJ-CRC) has voted to significantly reduce the registration and renewal fees for medicinal cannabis patients and caregivers. This development, announced at the Commission's final public meeting of the year, marks a pivotal shift in the state's approach to medical cannabis accessibility.
Effective from 5 p.m. on Thursday, December 7, the costs for registering and renewing in the Medicinal Cannabis Program (MCP) will be reduced to a mere $10 for a two-year period. This reduction is a substantial decrease from the previous fees of $50 for most registrants and $20 for seniors and others eligible for reduced fees. The Commission's decision directly benefits over 95,000 current patients and caregivers enrolled in the MCP, as well as new applicants.
Jeff Brown, the executive director of NJ-CRC, emphasized the Commission's ongoing commitment to improving the MCP. "We are consistently looking for ways to make the Medicinal Cannabis Program accessible and effective for patients. We recently upgraded our patient portal, and our latest effort is the reduction and ultimate elimination of fees,” said Brown.
Executive Director Brown further highlighted the financial challenges faced by patients, including out-of-pocket expenses for doctor's visits and the cost of cannabis, underscoring the Commission's efforts to remove barriers and ensure continuous access to cannabis treatment.
In early 2024, the Commission plans to introduce free digital ID cards for patients and caregivers opting for a digital-only patient ID. With the availability of these digital IDs, registration and renewal will become free for all participants of the MCP. Those preferring a physical card will incur a nominal $10 charge for registration or renewal and a $5 fee for replacements.
The New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission, responsible for establishing and enforcing regulations for licensing, cultivation, testing, selling, and purchasing of cannabis in the state, continues to evolve its policies, focusing on patient-centric reforms. This latest move is a significant stride toward making medicinal cannabis more accessible and affordable for New Jersey residents.
For more details about the Medicinal Cannabis Program and its recent updates, visit the official website at https://www.nj.gov/cannabis/medicinalcannabis/.