Clinics within our network accept patients who have been referred to the clinic by their physician or a medical specialist. After your physician completes the Patient Referral Form and it has been shared with the clinic, someone will contact you to book an appointment.
We do not typically accept walk-ins and prefer when patients are referred into the clinic network. It’s best to talk directly with your physician or healthcare provider to see if you may be a candidate for medical cannabis and have them complete the Patient Referral Form. Under certain circumstances, patients are able to complete and submit a self-referral form to the clinic for consideration, but they are still required to book an appointment for their consult.
Any physician you are seeing can refer you to one of our clinics. This includes other specialists, for example, psychiatrist, rheumatologist, oncologist, etc. If you have exhausted other therapies for disabling ailments and your physician refuses to refer you, please contact us.
After you and your physician determine that medical cannabis is right for you, you should never pay for a Medical Authorization document for medical cannabis.
Also, there is no fee to see a physician at our clinics when we receive a referral from your family physician or specialist.
During your initial visit you will receive a consultation with a physician as well as a free introductory cannabinoid education session with one of our trained cannabinoid educators.
Your appointment length may vary depending on the nature of the visit. Most physician consultations are roughly 30 minutes. If prescribed, you will also see a patient educator which could be up to 20 minutes. Follow up appointments are generally significantly shorter. We recommend allowing between 1 hour to 1 ½ hours for your appointment.
At your first visit please bring the following:
- A valid provincial health card
- A pharmacy report of all current and past medications (required in the case of a self-referral only)
If you have any additional documentation in your possession that would help the physician with your medical history, we encourage you to bring them to your appointment (for example, x-rays, CT Scans, MRI reports and letters from your specialists)
This will depend on a number of factors, including the current volume of referrals at your selected Licensed Producer. Traditionally, it can take anywhere from 1 to 7 business days to fully process your registration. Once registration is confirmed, and you order the product, you can receive the product as early as 1-3 days after ordering.
Medical cannabis, also sometimes called “medical marijuana”, refers to the range of products derived from the whole cannabis plant or its extracts. These products contain a variety of active cannabinoids and terpenes, that patients take for medical reasons, after obtaining authorization from a health care practitioner.
There are different types of cannabis plants including: Indica, Sativa and a range of hybrid mixes. Within these plant types there are specific cultivars or “strains” each with a unique profile. All cannabis used for medical treatments contain several complex compounds, the most notable of which are Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and Cannabidiol (CBD).
Cannabis is considered to be generally safe for the vast majority of people. Cannabinoids are non-toxic, and studies show they are well tolerated when used appropriately and with support. CBD typically does not produce side effects. THC, when used properly, produces minimal side effects. When taken in too high of a dose, THC can cause sedation, dizziness, grogginess or sensory changes. Our approach is designed to minimize the risks with cannabinoid therapy.
Yes. When the Cannabis Act came into force on October 17, 2018, use of cannabis, medical or otherwise, became legal across Canada.
Individuals can access cannabis for medical purposes provided they:
- Have a valid Medical Authorization Document from their doctor, and
- Purchase your medical cannabis from a Licensed Producer.
If you qualify for medical cannabis, the physician or nurse practitioner will give you a prescription at the end of your appointment. The prescription can be sent to any Licensed Producer (LP) who will then send your medication by mail or courier.
The cost for medical cannabis is set by the individual Licensed Producers. Current cost ranges between $5 and $15 per gram. This will depend on the Licensed Producer selected and whether or not you qualify for compassionate care programs (note: not all Licensed Producers have these). Most patients will use less than 1 gram a day.
While medical cannabis consultations or appointments with a qualified doctor are covered by some provincial healthcare plans, the cost of the medical cannabis used in your treatments is not currently covered.
As private insurers begin to recognize the value and benefits associated with cannabinoid therapy, some now offer coverage for specific conditions, so it’s worth checking periodically with your benefits provider. Additionally, some insurance companies will cover medical cannabis in an HSA account.
It’s worth noting that even if medical cannabis isn’t covered by your health insurer, it may still be more a more cost-effective option than using other prescription products with a co-payment insurance plan.
Finally, if you deal with Veterans Affairs or are in a position to request Compassion Pricing, our physicians or educators can assist you with the process of applying for coverage.
- Chemotherapy-induced Nausea and Vomiting
- Chronic pain
- HIV/AIDS related Anorexia and Nausea
- Multiple Sclerosis (Pain/Spasticity)
- Palliative Care of Cancer patients
Other conditions for which cannabinoid therapy may be considered when more traditional options have been exhausted include:
- Alcohol & Opioid Dependency
- Anxiety Disorder
- Autism Spectrum Disorder
- Headache Disorders/Migraines
- Inflammatory Bowel Disease (Ulcerative Colitis, Crohn’s)
- Neurodegenerative Disorders (Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s)
- Spinal Cord Injury
Medical cannabis has been shown effective in improving symptoms of ailments for which a number of first line treatments have failed. Symptoms include (but are not limited to) pain management, sleep issues, mood, appetite, nausea, and vomiting. Prescription cannabinoids and medical cannabis are typically not first line treatments for any of these conditions and will be considered only after these traditional treatments have failed.
The therapeutic effects of cannabis vary according to the content and ratio of THC and CBD compounds of the specific strain type. An Educator will assist you in choosing the strain best suited to help you manage your specific symptoms and conditions.
Various surveys published in peer-reviewed literature have suggested that the majority of people using inhaled or orally ingested cannabis for medical purposes reported using approximately 1-3 grams of cannabis per day.
In our experience, most patients receive maximum health benefits from less than 1 gram (or the equivalent dose) a day. While most initial medical authorization documents are written for 3 to 6 months, a medical autorization can be written for up to 12 months.
Under the Cannabis Act, medical cannabis patients are required to purchase their medical cannabis from a Licensed Producer or LP. Licensed Producers are regulated by Health Canada and follow strict quality control guidelines. Once you get Medical Authorization document, you are required to select and register with a Licensed Producer, and place an order with that producer.
Licensed Producers offer different strains of medical cannabis at different prices. A list of all Licensed Producers is available on Health Canada’s website. If you have a valid Medical Authorization document (prescription) from your doctor, our Patient Educators can assist you in choosing a Licensed Producer.
The Medical Authorization document can only be sent to more than one Licensed Producer, provided you do not exceed the authorized amount.
Yes – under certain circumstances, it is legal for a medical consumer or their designate to grow cannabis for their own consumption. They will need to purchase their starting materials from a Health Canada authorized source. Further information on this process can be found here.
We do not recommend or condone smoking medical cannabis as there is a variety of alternate means to consume cannabis, including vapourizing or consuming oils and other oil derivative products (like capsules & oral sprays). One mode of consumption may be more helpful for managing a specific symptom than another, and we can assist you in finding the mode of consumption that best suits your preference and specific condition.
It is recommended that you store your product in a cool and dark area out of reach of children, teenagers and pets.
Medical cannabis is still illegal in many parts of the world but you can travel with it within Canada. Please ensure you keep it in the original packaging and have your proof of registration from your Licensed Provider.