August 16, 2022
Missouri’s medical marijuana program publishes third annual report
The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) has published its third annual report of the Missouri Medical Marijuana Regulatory Program. DHSS is required to annually submit a report to the Governor regarding the efficient discharge of its responsibilities under Article XIV Section 1 of the Missouri Constitution. Reported activities are based on the program year of December 6, 2020, through December 5, 2021.
DHSS is charged with providing safe and secure access to medical marijuana for qualifying Missouri patients. During the third program year, DHSS issued 119,894 patient licenses in addition to renewing 38,347 patient licenses and issuing 4,979 agent (facility employee) identification cards. DHSS also began facility annual inspections and completed 267 commencement inspections.
DHSS implemented many process improvements during the program year, including a new call management system and an electronic physician certification form. Both of these improvements helped patients successfully navigate the application process. The number of patients whose initial applications needed corrections reduced from 21.39% at the beginning of the program year to 13.02% at the end of the program year.
“We are proud of our team members’ hard work, from answering patient inquiries and processing applications to overseeing and guiding licensed facilities. In order to get facilities open for business, our inspectors averaged five commencement inspections per week in program year 2021, which was a monumental undertaking,” stated Lyndall Fraker, Director of the Section for Medical Marijuana Regulation.
In the current and upcoming program year, DHSS will continue to monitor facilities’ progress and ability to meet the needs of patients. This requires collaboration with Missouri’s licensed facilities and patients, balanced by fair and impartial application of the law.
“This program is not just about creating access to safe products for patients. It’s also about the veterans who served our country,” said Fraker. Every year, the legislature appropriates a transfer of funds from the program to the Missouri Veterans Commission. As of June 30, 2022, the department had transferred $13,987,820 and is approved to transfer $13,000,000 during the current fiscal year.
An electronic copy of the annual report can be viewed at medicalmarijuana.mo.gov.