The Hawaii Department of Health is responsible for administering two distinct but related medical cannabis programs. Both the Medical Cannabis Registry Program and the Medical Cannabis Dispensary Program are designed to ensure medical cannabis is accessible for Hawaii’s patients, while making patient safety and public safety its ultimate priorities.
The Medical Cannabis Registry Program was created by Act 228 (Session Laws of Hawaii 2000), and is codified in the Hawaii Revised Statutes at part IX, Chapter 329, HRS.
The Medical Cannabis Dispensary Program was created by Act 241 (Session Laws of Hawaii 2015), and is codified in the Hawaii Revised Statutes (HRS) at Chapter 329D, HRS.
If you are planning on acquiring medical cannabis from a dispensary, you must have 1) your valid 329 card, and 2) valid state ID, valid state driver’s license, or valid passport book (not passport card) on your person to gain entry.
The Hawaii Department of Health’s Harm Reduction Services Branch has administered the Medical Cannabis Registry Program since it was transferred from the Hawaii Department of Public Safety on January 1, 2015.
Hawaii law requires all qualified patients to be registered with the Medical Cannabis Registry Program before they begin to use cannabis for medicinal purposes. The registration process begins when an appropriately licensed physician certifies that the patient has a health condition that can benefit from medical cannabis. The patient is registered when the Department of Health issues a 329 Registration Card. The department’s goal is to issue the patient’s 329 Registration Card in a timely manner so that patients can begin or continue to legally use medical cannabis.
The Department of Health is also required to provide law enforcement officials with limited access to the Medical Cannabis Registry Program’s data base as a tool to safeguard the community against illegal cannabis use and/or illegal cannabis grow sites.
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As of 9/19/18 we are processing applications received on 09/10/2018.
Click here for information on how to check the status of your application.
Registry Applicants, be sure to check your account at medmj.ehawaii.gov WEEKLY for registration status updates. If you do not see a 329 Registration Number your card has not been issued, yet. Once your application has been approved you will receive an email notification and when you log into your account you will see a 329 Registration number. Please allow ample time for U.S. postal delivery.
If you wish to communicate with the Medical Cannabis Registry Program, email email@example.com. We will respond to your inquiries as soon as humanly possible.
The Hawaii Department of Health’s Office of Health Care Assurance oversees the dispensary licensure program to monitor the quality of the cannabis products from seed to sale. This includes statewide oversight of the laboratories that test the safety and quality of the cannabis and manufactured cannabis products, and monitoring of the dispensaries who will grow, manufacture, and sell the products to qualified patients.
Act 241 was signed into law in July 2015 and became Chapter 329D, HRS. The Hawaii Department of Health will begin administering the Medical Cannabis Dispensary Program in 2016 and dispensaries may begin to dispense medical cannabis and manufactured medical cannabis products as early as July 2016 with departmental approval.
Medical cannabis has been legal in Hawaii since 2000, but access to medical cannabis remained a challenge. Patients and caregivers could legally grow their own cannabis plants within certain parameters. Advocates of medical cannabis have hailed the dispensary program as a major breakthrough. The goal of the dispensary licensure program is to make medicinal products readily available for registered patients while balancing the health and safety of patients and the public.
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If you wish to communicate with the Medical Cannabis Dispensary Program, please email DOH.MedCannabis.Dispensary@doh.hawaii.gov. We will respond to your inquiries as soon as humanly possible.
Dispensary Applicants, be sure to regularly check Dispensary Updates (on the left side of this page) for information on dispensary licensing requirements, frequently asked questions (FAQ), and other valuable updates.
Medical Cannabis Laws, Rules, and Other Relevant Resources
The Medical Use of Cannabis Outstanding Issues Working Group (“Working Group”) was established by the Legislature pursuant to HB2729 HD2 SD2 CD1 (2018). Act 116 was signed into law by Governor David Y. Ige on July 5, 2018. The Working Group was established to consider and make recommendations regarding:
- Employment: Issues involving an employee who is a registered qualifying patient for whom the medical use of cannabis is permitted pursuant to sections 329-122 and 329-123, HRS; and
- Edibles: Authorization and regulation of the manufacture and dispensing of edible cannabis products by a licensed medical cannabis dispensary.
Click Here to view working group meeting information
Act 116 SLH 2018 – Makes several changes to the current law:
- Extends the validity of the certification with the concurrence of the patient and patient’s physician/APRN.
- Safe Pulmonary Administration (SPA) products have been added to the list of approved “merch” licensed medical cannabis retail dispensaries may sell to qualifying patients.
- Patients who are registered for medical cannabis use in other states may be able to benefit from our program while visiting the islands.
- One or both parents/guardians are now allowed to register as caregivers for one or more qualifying minor patients.
- The bona fide provider-patient relationship may continue via telehealth after the relationship has been established by a face-to-face consultation.
Act 242 SLH 2015 – Adds non-discriminatory language to existing laws as they may pertain to the medical use of cannabis.
Act 241 SLH 2015 – Hawaii’s Dispensary law that paves the way for the establishment of dispensaries in the state of Hawaii and also amends other existing laws with respect to the medical use of cannabis.
Act 178 SLH 2013 – Makes several changes to the current law (such as: “adequate supply” of medical cannabis changes to 7 plants, regardless of maturity; useable cannabis changes to 4 oz; increase in registration fees from $25 to $35; and other changes) please read Act 178 for more information.
Act 228 SLH 2000 – Hawaii’s initial Medical Use of Cannabis law.
HRS 329 Hawaii’s Uniformed Controlled Substances Act (see part IX – Medical Use of Cannabis).
HRS 329, Part IX Hawaii’s Medical Cannabis Registry Law
Chapter 11-160, HAR – DOH Administrative Rules for the medical use of cannabis. (Registry Program)
HRS 329D Hawaii’s Medical Cannabis Dispensary Law
HRS328J Hawaii’s Smoke Free Law – all of which are directly applicable to smoking or vaping cannabis.
U.S. Department of Justice “Marijuana Enforcement”, January 4, 2018