Wednesday, September 13, 2017

The Patients Are Coming-November 3rd 2017




New Mexico Department of Health
Medical Cannabis Advisory Board Hearing And Petition Requirements

The Department of Health has announced it’s next Medical Cannabis Program Medical Cannabis Advisory Board Hearing to be held; Friday, November 3rd 2017 from 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM at Harold Runnels Building-1190 S. St. Francis Drive, Santa Fe, NM 87505
Per the MCP Announcement, the meeting will be on the first floor in the auditorium. Please ensure petitions include: name, address, telephone number of petitioner, are unbound, and includes copies of all materials cited and materials the petitioner wants the Medical Advisory Board to consider. All petitions must be received no later than close of business on October 03, 2017. You may obtain the Medical Cannabis Advisory Board Meeting Agenda no later than 72 hours before the meeting.

The State’s Medical Cannabis Program expansion is now “Medically Necessary”; the State needs to allow the Department of Health to open the application process to add more licensed non-profit producers, in conjunction with the approval of petitions approved by the MCAB in April 2017 to ensure safe access to medicine.

What Happened At The Last MCAB Meeting in April 2017?
During the 2017 Regular Legislative Session, state lawmakers made efforts to legislate a number of changes to the state’s Medical Cannabis Program with over 25 different pieces of legislation, one of the bills vetoed by Gov. Susana Martinez, was House Bill-527, on Friday-April 7th 2017 (same day as the last medical cannabis advisory board meeting), saying she did so in part because she didn’t want to “eliminate an important responsibility” of the Medical Cannabis Advisory Board. Health Secretary Lynn Gallagher, who has the final word on changes to the state Medical Cannabis Program, hasn’t decided whether to accept new conditions and petitions the board recommended yet.


That same Friday morning, on April 7th 2017, the Department of Health’s Medical Cannabis Advisory Board held a meeting exercising that important responsibility the Governor spoke of, that resulted in some of the following: The Medical Cannabis Advisory Board voted in favor of the following Petitions and recommended to add them into the program;

•2017‐022 Patient Run Collectives- Recommended to add to MCP 4-0
The addition of Patient Run Collectives would help relieve the medical cannabis plant count shortage.
•2017-005 Change/increase possession limit to 16 oz- Recommended to add to MCP 4-0
•2017-009 Removal of Max THC Content- Recommended Removal of Cap   4-0

Per the Department of Health’s legal counsel’s input, the following petitions numbered 3 and 11 were said that they would require statutory changes or are not covered under the duties of the MCAB and were not discussed at the MCAB meeting. Yet on that same day of this Medical Cannabis Advisory Board Meeting, the Governor of New Mexico said she didn’t want to take away this important responsibility of the MCAB...so according to the Governor these Petitions should have been heard?

•2017-003 Change LECUA to give MCAB more authority (increase membership)
The addition of this Petition would allow the MCAB to better exercise that important responsibility the Governor spoke of thru increased membership, thus leading to relieving the medical cannabis plant count shortage.
•2017-011  Add definition of Medical Treatment definition to LECUA and add Adequate
Supply
Petitions 8,10 and 23 concern the licensed producers and would require statutory changes and are not covered under the duties of the MCAB and will not be discussed. Once again, on that same day of this Medical Cannabis Advisory Board Meeting, the Governor of New Mexico said she didn’t want to take away this important responsibility of the MCAB...so according to the Governor these Petitions should have been heard?

Why was there a denial of hearing these petitions that are the “important responsibility” of the Medical Cannabis Advisory Board?

All of these petitions provide a solution to the State’s current violation to the LECUA law and items proposed in all of these petitions were also proposed and passed in one or both chambers of the State’s legislature with some dying in committee or being vetoed.

•2017-008 Remove CBD plants from producer plant count
The inclusion of this petition would help relieve the medical cannabis plant count shortage.
•2017-010 Increase plants for licensed producers
The inclusion of this petition would help relieve the medical cannabis plant count shortage.
•2017-023 Develop MCP education and research components
The inclusion of this petition would help relieve the medical cannabis plant count shortage.

(All Petitions Can Be Viewed Online At: LECUA NM MCP MCAB Petitions)
The current law for the Medical Cannabis Program, passed in 2007, states the following, (Page 1/Section 2) “PURPOSE OF ACT.--The purpose of the Lynn and Erin Compassionate Use Act is to allow the beneficial use of medical cannabis in a regulated system for alleviating symptoms caused by debilitating medical conditions and their medical treatments.”


A Policy Solution For The Adequate Supply of Medical Cannabis Plants.
The Governor’s Office has highlighted the importance of such priorities like; Ensuring Transparency and Ethics in Government, and Keeping all New Mexicans Safe. In the Roundhouse, one of the state legislators’ primary functions is to represent the people who elect them, but it is by no means their only function. They help to solve the numerous problems of their constituents, they serve on interim committees and they continually study new ideas for legislation. The Department of Health’s mission is to promote health and wellness, improve health outcomes, and assure safety net services for all people in New Mexico. And the purpose of the Lynn and Erin Compassionate Use Act is to allow the beneficial use of medical cannabis in a regulated system for alleviating symptoms caused by debilitating medical conditions and their medical treatments.

The State’s Medical Cannabis Program expansion is now “Medically Necessary”; the State needs to allow the Department of Health to open the application process to add more licensed non-profit producers, in conjunction with the addition of patient run collectives and allowing some producers to increase the plants they can grow. The State can allow the Department and Medical Cannabis Advisory Board to exercise that important responsibility they have to all New Mexicans, by opening up and accepting producer applications under newly created rules that would have 3 different licensing options.

The Medical Cannabis Program officials can create 3 different licensing options to include:
  1. A Licensed Producer to operate only as a grow facility for distribution to dispensaries.
  2. A Licensed Producer to operate only as a dispensary for distribution to patients.
  3. A LNPP to operate both as a grow facility and licensed for to operate dispensaries - with a limit of 3 store fronts per this type of license.
  4. In addition to reducing current and new licensing fee’s.

The approval of ALL the recommendations made by the Doctors on the Medical Cannabis Advisory Board, having the Department of Health to open the application process to add more licensed non-profit producers, and increasing the amount of medical cannabis plants a LNPPs and Patients can grow; would all need to be done to bring the State of New Mexico in compliance with the legal intent of the LECUA law and uphold the spirit of the Lynn and Erin Compassionate Use Act, 2007.  As we have already saw these same recommendations supported by voters and lawmakers in the state’s legislature.  New Mexico’s medical cannabis history started in 1978.  After public hearings the legislature enacted H.B. 329, the nation’s first law recognizing the medical value of cannabis...the first law.

NM Medical Cannabis Program 2017 Second Quarterly Report Summary & 2017/2018 Relicensure:
- 1 Licensed Non Profit Producer Per 1,300 Patient
- 35 LNPPs and 4 of those LNPPs have no operating dispensary;
additionally 4 LNPP's decided not to increase the number of plants they can grow;
of those four - 2 of these Licenses are being used to produce only 450 plants
- Average Price Per Gram (Flowers and Bud): $10.40
- Average Amount (Units) Purchased: 15.63
- (Average Transaction Amount: $162.55)
- Over Half of all Dispensary Locations are in Albuquerque City Area
- Totals Plants in Production: 12,281 (out of 13,800 possible)
- Number of Plants Harvested: 5,430
- 2017/2018 Relicensure; Total Medical Cannabis Plants = 14,550 (For over 45,000 Patients)
- If all 35 LNPPs grew the max allowed: (450 Medical Cannabis Plants x 35) Total = 15,750

“Pure mathematics is, in its way, the poetry of logical ideas.” ... Albert Einstein.

We have a sound law in the Lynn and Erin Compassionate Use Act that is benefiting many New Mexicans, yet we are unable to provide “adequate supply” and it can not be properly defined by the Department by using unknown variables it has not collected then this leads to further examination of how these definitions pertaining to adequate supply were determined in the past years. Let’s continue to allow the medical cannabis program to benefit and save lives of more and more New Mexicans.

Growthrate6.jpg

*Share Your Comments and Petitions you support or oppose with Your State Legislator & Invite Your State Legislator TO ATTEND The MCAB Hearing: Find My Legislator https://www.nmlegis.gov/Members/Find_My_Legislator

“Dear New Mexicans and Visitors,
I am committed to listening to your concerns and working to answer your questions.  Therefore, the Constituent Services division within my office has been directed to professionally and efficiently assist in answering your questions and responding to your requests of state government.
My staff is here to serve you and will do everything they can to address your concerns.
Please do not hesitate to call my office at 505-476-2200 to speak with a Constituent Services representative or fill out the form below and we will contact you in a timely manner.
Sincerely,
Governor Susana Martinez”

Democracy is not a spectator sport. Liberty requires responsibility. Both require your engagement. Your voice matters. Register to vote today!

With a government elected by its citizens and that affects every aspect of our lives from schools to health care to homeland security, voting is an important right in our society. By voting, you are making your voice heard and registering your opinion on how you think the government should operate. When more people vote, they increase the chance that the issues that are important to them are taken seriously.


To vote in New Mexico, you must be registered at least 28 days prior to the election. Simply pick up a voter registration application form or print the national form online, fill it out, then mail it to the New Mexico Office of the Secretary of State or your local County Clerk's Office.

Link To Voter Registration Information For New Mexico and Phone Number: 505.827.3600

Total Population of New Mexico: 2,059,179   Total Registered Voters In New Mexico: 1,205,076
New Mexico had a Voter Turnout Rate of 34% in Primary Elections and a Voter Turnout Rate of 61% for General Elections in 2016. (Per NM SoS)

Appendix A: Petition/Petitioner Requirements
A petitioner must file the following information with the Medical Cannabis Program:
1. The name, address and telephone number of the petitioner and the medical condition, medical treatment or disease sought to be added to the existing debilitating medical conditions;
2. An introductory narrative requesting the inclusion of a new medical condition, medical treatment or disease;
3. A summary or summaries of the proposed benefits from the medical use of cannabis specific to the medical condition, medical treatment or disease sought to be added to the existing medical conditions approved for participation in the program, including any credible published studies known to the petitioner;
4. Medical records from the petitioner which are relevant to the condition, treatment or disease sought to be added to the list of eligible conditions for enrollment;
5. A copy of the petitioner’s New Mexico driver’s license or comparable New Mexico state or federal issued photo identification card verifying New Mexico residence.

The petition may be presented to the Medical Advisory Board by either the petitioner or their representative.
Statement of intent to present technical evidence:
If the petitioner wishes to present technical evidence at the hearing, the petition shall include a statement of intent. The statement of intent to present technical evidence shall include:
(a) The name of the person filing the statement;
(b) The name of each witness;
(c) An estimate of the length of the direct testimony of each witness;
(d) A list of exhibits, if any, to be offered into evidence at the hearing; and;
(e) A summary or outline of the anticipated direct testimony of each witness.

Please submit two copies of the petition as the information will be redacted to protect the identity of the petitioner. Only the Medical Cannabis Program staff will know the identity of the petitioner, unless the petitioner wishes to meet with the Medical Advisory Board at the actual hearing. The Board is not available for individual meetings prior to the hearing.
All petitions should be either hand delivered or mailed to:
Medical Cannabis Program
New Mexico Dept. of Health
1190 St. Francis Dr, S3400
Santa Fe, NM 87505

7.34.2.9                 PETITION REQUIREMENTS:
              A.            Petition requirements. The advisory board may accept and review petitions from any individual or association of individuals requesting the addition of a new medical condition, medical treatment or disease for the purpose of participating in the medical cannabis program and all lawful privileges under the act. Except as otherwise provided, a petitioner filing a petition shall file the petition and a copy with the medical cannabis program staff by either personal delivery or certified mail. In order for a petition to be processed and forwarded to the advisory board the following information shall be submitted to the medical cannabis program staff.
                              (1)           Petition format: Unless otherwise provided by this part or by order of the hearing officer, all documents, except exhibits, shall be prepared on 8 1/2 x 11-inch white paper, printed double-sided, if possible, and where appropriate, the first page of every document shall contain a heading and caption. The petitioner shall include in the petition documents a narrative address to the advisory board, which includes:
                                              (a)           petition caption stating the name, address and telephone number of the petitioner and the medical condition, medical treatment or disease sought to be added to the existing debilitating medical conditions;
                                              (b)           an index of the contents of the petition, an introductory narrative of the individual or association of individuals requesting the inclusion of a new medical condition, medical treatment or disease to include the individual or association of individuals’ relationship or interest for the request whether that interest is professional or as a concerned citizen;
                                              (c)           the proposed benefits from the medical use of cannabis specific to the medical condition, medical treatment or disease sought to be added to the existing debilitating medical conditions listed under the act; and
                                              (d)           any additional supporting medical, testimonial, or scientific documentation.
                              (2)           Statement of intent to present technical evidence: If the petitioner wishes to present technical evidence at the hearing, the petition shall include a statement of intent. The statement of intent to present technical evidence shall include:
                                              (a)           the name of the person filing the statement;
                                              (b)           the name of each witness;
                                              (c)           an estimate of the length of the direct testimony of each witness;
                                              (d)           a list of exhibits, if any, to be offered into evidence at the hearing; and
                                              (e)           a summary or outline of the anticipated direct testimony of each witness.
              B.            Qualified patient applicant petitioner: If the petitioner is submitting their requests as a potential qualified patient applicant the petitioner shall attach an original medical practitioner’s certification for patient eligibility form provided by the medical cannabis program manager or designee which includes the following information:
                              (1)           the name, address, telephone number and clinical licensure of the petitioner’s practitioner;
                              (2)           the medical justification for practitioner’s certification of the petitioner’s debilitating medical condition;
                              (3)           the practitioner’s signature and date of signature;
                              (4)           the name, address and date of birth of the petitioner;
                              (5)           the name, address and telephone number of the petitioner’s practitioner;
                              (6)           a reasonable xerographic copy of the petitioner’s New Mexico driver’s license or comparable New Mexico state or federal issued photo identification card verifying New Mexico residence;
                              (7)           documented parental consent if applicable to the petitioner;
                              (8)           if applicable, the petitioner’s potential debilitating medical condition;
                              (9)           the length of time the petitioner has been under the care of the practitioner providing the medical provider certification for patient eligibility;
                              (10)         the petitioner’s signature and date; and
                              (11)         a signed consent for release of medical information form provided by the medical cannabis program.
              C.            Petitioner confidentiality: The department shall maintain a confidential file containing the names and addresses of the persons who have either applied for or received a public hearing petition request. Individual names on the list shall be confidential and not subject to disclosure, except:
                              (1)           to authorized employees or agents of the department as necessary to perform the duties of the department pursuant to the provisions of the act or this part;
                              (2)           as provided in the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996.
              D.            Department notification: The medical cannabis program manager or designee shall review each petition request and within reasonable time after receipt issue notice of docketing upon the petitioner, each advisory board member, and the advisory board legal counsel. The notice of docketing shall contain the petition caption and docket number, the date upon which the petition was received and scheduling date of the advisory board public hearing. A copy of this rule shall be included with a notice of docketing sent to the petitioner.
              E.            Examination allowed: Subject to the provisions of law restricting the public disclosure of confidential information, any person may, during normal business hours, inspect and copy any document filed in any public hearing proceeding. Inspection shall be permitted in accordance with the Inspection of Public Records Act, Sections 14-2-1 et seq., NMSA 1978, but may be limited by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996. Documents subject to inspection shall be made available by the medical cannabis program manager, or designee as appropriate. Unless waived by the department, the cost of duplicating documents or audio filed in any public hearing proceeding shall be borne by the person seeking the copies.
              F.            Notice of withdrawal: A petitioner may withdraw a petition at any time prior to a decision by the advisory board by filing a notice of withdrawal with the medical cannabis program manager or designee.
[7.34.2.9 NMAC - Rp, 7.34.2.9 NMAC, 2/27/2015]
( https://nmhealth.org/resource/view/223/ )

MCP Forms And Documents

This section is a comprehensive reference to all of the forms, documents, publications and resources that are currently available for the Medical Cannabis Program (MCP).



Applications

Forms

General Information

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Medical Cannabis Patient Frequently Asked Questions
  • Medical Cannabis Provider Frequently Asked Questions



Rules & Regulations

  • NMAC 7.34.2 - Medical cannabis advisory board responsibilities and duties.
  • NMAC 7.34.3 - Medical cannabis registry identification cards.
  • NMAC 7.34.4 - Medical cannabis licensing requirements for producers, couriers, manufacturers and laboratories.

7.34.2.10               ADVISORY BOARD PUBLIC HEARING PROCEDURES:
              A.            Public hearing requirement: The advisory board shall convene by public hearing at least twice per year to accept and review petitions requesting the inclusion of medical conditions, medical treatments or diseases to the list of debilitating medical conditions. Any meeting consisting of a quorum of the advisory board members held for the purpose of evaluating, discussing or otherwise formulating specific opinions concerning the recommendation of a petition filed pursuant to this rule, shall be declared a public hearing open to the public at all times, unless a portion of the hearing is closed to protect information made confidential by applicable state or federal laws.  A petitioner or his or her representative may request to close a portion of the hearing to protect the disclosure of confidential information by submitting their request in writing and having that request delivered to medical cannabis program staff at least 48 hours prior to the hearing.
              B.            Location of the public hearing: Unless otherwise ordered by the advisory board, the public hearing shall be in held in New Mexico at a location sufficient to accommodate the anticipated audience.
              C.            Public hearing notice: The medical cannabis program manager or designee shall, upon direction from the advisory board chairperson, prepare a notice of public hearing setting forth the date, time and location of the hearing, a brief description of the petitions received, and information on the requirements for public comment or statement of intent to present technical evidence, and no later than 30 days prior to the hearing date, send copies, with requests for publication, to at least one newspaper of general circulation.  The program manager or designee may further issue notice of the hearing by any other means the department determines to be acceptable to provide notice to the public.
              D.            Public hearing agenda: The department shall make available an agenda containing a list of specific items to be discussed or information on how the public may obtain a copy of such agenda.
              E.            Postponement of hearing: Request for postponement of a public hearing will be granted, by the advisory board for good cause shown.
              F.            Statement of intent to present technical evidence: Any individual or association of individuals who wish to present technical evidence at the hearing shall, no later than 15 days prior to the date of the hearing, file a statement of intent. The statement of intent to present technical evidence shall include:
                              (1)           the name of the person filing the statement;
                              (2)           indication of whether the person filing the statement supports or opposes the petition at issue;
                              (3)           the name of each witness;
                              (4)           an estimate of the length of the direct testimony of each witness;
                              (5)           a list of exhibits, if any, to be offered into evidence at the hearing; and
                              (6)           a summary or outline of the anticipated direct testimony of each witness.
              G.            Ex parte discussions: At no time after the initiation and before the conclusion of the petition process under this part, shall the department, or any other party, interested participant or their representatives discuss ex parte the merits of the petitions with any advisory board member.
              H.            Public hearing process: The advisory board chairperson shall conduct the public hearing so as to provide a reasonable opportunity for all interested persons to be heard without making the hearing unreasonably lengthy or cumbersome or burdening the record with unnecessary repetition.
                              (1)           A quorum of the advisory board shall consist of three voting members.
                              (2)           The advisory board chairperson or alternate shall convene each public hearing by:
                                              (a)           introduction of the advisory board members;
                                              (b)           statutory authority of the board;
                                              (c)           statement of the public hearing agenda; and
                                              (d)           recognition of the petitioner.
                              (3)           Petitioner comment period. The petitioner or by representative may present evidence to the advisory board. The advisory board shall only consider findings of fact or scientific conclusions of medical evidence presented by the petitioner or by representative to the advisory board prior to or contemporaneously with the public hearing.
                              (4)           Public comment period: The advisory board may provide for a public comment period. Public comment may be by written comment, verbal or both.
                                              (a)           Written comment: Any individual or association of individuals may submit written comment to the advisory board either in opposition or support of the inclusion of a medical conditions, medical treatments or diseases to the existing list of debilitating medical conditions contained under the act. All written comment shall adhere to the requirements of Subsection F of this section.
                                              (b)           Public comment: Any member of the general public may testify at the public hearing.  No prior notification is required to present general non-technical statements in support of or in opposition to the petition.  Any such member may also offer exhibits in connection with his testimony, so long as the exhibit is non-technical in nature and not unduly repetitious of the testimony.
              I.             Recording the hearing: Unless the advisory board orders otherwise, the hearing will be audio recorded. Any person, other than the advisory board, desiring a copy of the audio tapes must arrange copying with the medical cannabis program or designee at their own expense.
[7.34.2.10 NMAC - Rp, 7.34.2.10 NMAC, 2/27/2015]
7.34.2.11               ADVISORY BOARD RECOMMENDATION TO THE DEPARTMENT:
              A.            Advisory board recommendation: Upon final determination the advisory board shall provide to the secretary a written report of finding, which recommends either the approval or denial of the petitioner’s request.  The written report of findings shall include a medical justification for the recommendation based upon the individual or collective expertise of the advisory board membership. The medical justification shall delineate between the findings of fact made by the advisory board and scientific conclusions of credible medical evidence.
              B.            Department final determination: The department shall notify the petitioner within 10 days of the secretary’s determination. A denial by the secretary regarding the inclusion of a medical conditions, medical treatments or diseases to the existing list of debilitating medical conditions contained under the act shall not represent a permanent denial by the department. Any individual or association of individuals may upon good cause re-petition the advisory board. All requests shall present new supporting findings of fact, or scientific conclusions of credible medical evidence not previously examined by the advisory board.
[7.34.2.11 NMAC - Rp, 7.34.2.11 NMAC, 2/27/2015]

Contact Information

Physical Address
1474 Rodeo Rd., Suite 200
Santa Fe, NM 87505
505-827-2321 (Phone)
505-476-3025 (Fax)
Mailing Address
Department of Health
Medical Cannabis Program
PO Box 26110
Santa Fe, NM, 87502-6110
Email Address
medical.cannabis@state.nm.us

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