Pennsylvania Department Of Health Issues Final Physician Regulations For Medical Marijuana – JD Supra (press release)
As previously reported on our Physician Law Blog (see our post here), the Pennsylvania Department of Health issued draft “temporary” regulations regarding physician registration and certification of medical marijuana on April 11, 2017. Following a brief comment period, the Department finalized its “temporary” regulations in the June 3, 2017 issue of the PA Bulletin. A copy of the final regulations can be viewed here.
The regulations are labeled “temporary” because they were adopted to implement PA’s new Medical Marijuana Program. As a result, they will expire in two years, unless made permanent by the Department. However, for the first year of the Program, these regulations will govern the registration of any physician who wishes to certify the use of medical marijuana for his or her patients. The Department has confirmed in a related press release that the Medical Marijuana Program continues to be on schedule for full implementation in early 2018.
The final physician regulations make a few notable changes to the draft regulations, but also leave physicians with some lingering questions regarding the registration process, advertising their certification services, and charging fees for re-certifying the use of medical marijuana for existing patients.
1. The publicly available Practitioner Registry maintained by the Department will include only the practitioner’s name, business address and medical credentials (as opposed to the practitioner’s phone number and/or email address). [See 28 Pa. Code 1181.25]. As a result, a prospective patient seeking a physician on the Practitioner Registry will need to take the extra step to conduct a web search on the physician in order to locate the physician’s contact information. While this may encourage physicians registered to certify the use of medical marijuana to ensure that their practice websites clearly advertise their services, physicians should note that the Medical Marijuana Act