Talking MMJ with MarijuanaDoctors.com
As of this writing, cannabis is legal for recreational use in eleven states, and legal for medicinal purposes in thirty three states. While tremendous progress has been made, the legal marijuana landscape is both dynamic and complex, and thus can be incredibly difficult to navigate. In April of 2019, I spoke with a representative from MarijuanaDoctors.com to discuss its current role in the medical marijuana movement.
How did Marijuana Doctors come to exist?
MarijuanaDoctors.com was started in 2008 as a reaction to California recommendation mills violating real estate and healthcare laws. We saw a major need to educate the marketplace so consumers have enough transparency to make an informed decision. We quickly realized the need to create a digital footprint online for physicians, patients, and those interested in learning all things that relate to marijuana as a medicine.
Is there a certain criteria doctors must meet in order to be added to your directory?
Practitioners must be in good standing with the state as well as their medical license. Some states require completion of a specific CME (Continuing Medical Education) along with registering with the state department of health. In order to list with us, practitioners are required to be in compliance with applicable state laws.
How exactly does Marijuana Doctors automate the navigation process for those seeking certification or quality meds?
MarijuanaDoctors.com starts by providing insight to what is involved with the patient journey. When a patient registers with us they can then schedule an appointment with an approved physician. They will receive appointment and follow up reminders along with what is necessary to see the process through to completion. Once certified, patients then can go online to our dispensary section and view various medications. In states like NY, for example, they can see a physician online scheduled or on demand. Once they have their card they may order their medication via our online ordering platform all from the privacy of their home.
How does Marijuana Doctors go about forging partnerships with vendors and what are some of the products visitors can find when shopping with you online?
MarijuanaDoctors.com has a formal vetting process that requires a substantial amount of due diligence. Patients and consumers will be able to view products carried by licensed dispensaries listed with us. We have recently added our co-branded medical-grade, organic, USA made, triple-lab tested CBD products to meet the demands of the market and our registered user base. Our offering menu will continue to expand in the future to meet our user needs.
With recreational marijuana recently being legalized in Michigan, I’ve heard quite a few locals say that obtaining a card is no longer necessary. What are the benefits of certification for qualifying patients in legal states?
Medical marijuana patients are afforded advantageous pricing and reduced taxes. One of the issues in Michigan is Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs has until Dec. 6, 2019 to develop administrative rules and begin taking applications. Recreational marijuana won’t be available until at least mid 2020. Aside from that, unfortunately due to their health conditions MMJ patients are forced to purchase medical marijuana monthly. The major downside of recreational marijuana are increased taxes along with more limitations on the quantity to be obtained or that one can grow. In California, for example, taxes range from 15–45% therefore, if a consumer spends $100/month or more on products, even at the 15% tax it will outweigh the cost of a MMJ card, especially if is up for renewal. Medical products are also held to higher standards than recreational products.
Has the uptick in recreational legalization impacted your stance or efforts in any way?
Absolutely not! We have planned accordingly for both medical and recreational to be legal sometime in the future. We believe there is a place for both markets to coexist. The recreational movement has put pressure on authorities to speed up medical as it takes precedence over recreational. We are actually investing more in the business now than ever.
What should medical marijuana users know about telemedicine and its potential value to patients?
Telemedicine is the future of medicine. We see this as “where the puck is going”. This feature has been positioned as a value add to streamline the user experience providing many competitive advantages. We are in an on-demand world these days. The same reason why Netflix has created an enormous business … we agree its all about the user experience. All of our users have telemedicine capability. Also, we facilitate the patient connection to dispensaries so that a user may see a pharmacist face to face to feel comfortable with the medication they are about to take. By providing consumer immediate gratification, the odds of losing an interested party are reduced.
Are there any other cutting-edge technologies or trends that medical marijuana users should keep an eye on?
MarijuanaDoctors.com is improving the customer experience to further understand the needs, wants, wishes of the user. We are investing in our technology to improve the interactive experience and to capture what consumers interests are. We will be incorporating more AI into our platform to create better data sets for us to make prudent monetization decisions. There is a trend in streamlining a vertically integrated business and we are confident that we can be the last leg of the process.
CBD is turning into an explosive component of the market, allowing doctors to incorporate nutraceutical and wellness sales to their patients while providing an alternative to medical marijuana. In some states, unfortunately, it takes weeks to obtain your MMJ card. This addresses an immediate demand of the market and we are poised to capitalize on it.
MarijauanaDoctors.com is constantly upgrading technology and adding content to create the best user experience for patients entering this medicinal ecosystem, as a one-stop show for a new kind of healthcare.
Contel Bradford is a mystical and multi-layered individual. You can attempt to unravel some of the mystery by visiting his freelance writing site at contelbradford.com.