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Medical Marijuana Patient Registry Begins in Ocean County

Three doctors on list for Toms River

The Medical Marijuana Program Patient Registry begins today in New Jersey, as the Department of Health allows qualified patients and their caregivers to apply for identification cards.

“The Department has made every effort to make the process as user friendly as possible,” said Health Commissioner Mary E. O’Dowd in a news release. “Registered physicians have had access to the system since July to become familiar with it and have their questions answered.”

The department has a list of more than 100 physicians, including three in Ocean County, authorized to recommend medical marijuana to patients.

All three are in Toms River:

  • Dr. Anselm Igbanugo, 54 Bey Lea Road, Toms River
  • Dr. James Morales, 1868 Hooper Avenue, Toms River
  • Dr. Ashok Patel, 20 Hospital Drive, Suite 12, Toms River

Patients and their doctors can register through the Department of Health medical marijuana registration website.

Doctors can register patients by attesting the patient has one of the "debilitating diseases" on the on the website, which lists diseases that have symptoms proven to be alleviated by marijuana.

According to the release, "If a patient designates a caregiver to assist in the delivery of the medicinal marijuana from the Alternative Treatment Center (ATC), the caregiver must be a New Jersey resident, 18 years of age or older, and may not serve as a caregiver for another patient."

Patient identification cards are obtained by including a patient photograph, proof of residency, a government issued ID, and if applicable documentation of receipt of certain state and federal assistance programs.

The registration fee for patients and caregivers is $200, valid for two years. Patients and caregivers who qualify for certain state and federal assistance programs can pay a reduced registration fee of $20. Payment can be made online.

Ocean County is not the only county with authorized doctors. Three more are in Monmouth, where . Members of the board wanted decisions on medical marijuana growth to rest with local governing bodies.

An , and denied in November of last year.

New Jersey’s medical marijuana law was signed more than two years ago by then-Governor Jon Corzine. Advocates have criticized delays in implementing the program and releasing the list of doctors.

Medical marijuana has been said to ease symptoms associated with debilitating medical conditions including cancer, multiple sclerosis, AIDS and muscular dystrophy.

Sean Conneamhe August 09, 2012 at 05:13 PM
"Medical marijuana is not allowed on preserved farmland, but wineries are allowed."
Mattie August 09, 2012 at 05:15 PM
One small step forward and I'm sure C. Christie is ready to beat it backwards at least 4 or 5 steps any time now. That's his pattern. And one of the doctors listed for Ocean County (on the big list, see link) is telling people who call that he will not be taking on any new patients for Med. Marijuana. He will only prescribe that to 'existing patients' already seeing him. Real nice. How helpful and medically conscientious.
DaveL August 09, 2012 at 05:26 PM
This is great news for us with one of the conditions included; but I wonder if we will ever see a treatment center actually open. For some reasons, idiots keep blocking the development of these treatment centers in their towns. It's not like potheads are going to walk in, buy weed, and hang out in the parking lot getting sky high. When done in accordance with the law, these treatment centers pose no threat or risk to the surrounding communities. Enough red tape, let us get some relief!
DaveL August 09, 2012 at 05:27 PM
Good point Mattie. Maybe the staff at Patch can investigate which, if any doctors are accepting new patients?
Randal Graves August 09, 2012 at 08:28 PM
How long until the DEA starts busting dispensaries here like they did in California?
Mattie August 09, 2012 at 11:20 PM
Because Lacy, if they are going to restrict which doctors can and can not prescribe MM by way of registering with the state, and being on a list, and probably PAYING to be on that list, and most likely they're only letting so many doctors get on this list.... it's all kind of pointless if a 'new patient' can't get seen by the FEW doctors state wide that are registered to prescribe. This is once again, one of Christie's brainstorms. There should be no restrictions at to WHICH doctors can prescribe or not. I have a regular doctor, a doctor that knows my physical history, and who has been my doctor for more than 8 years. But they are not registered for prescribing MM at this time. Why? I don't know why. Do you? Why can't ANY licensed practicing doctor prescribe MM just like any other medication?
Mattie August 09, 2012 at 11:22 PM
And by the way, medical marijuana IS for people who are "actually sick" thank you. That's why it's called "medical" marijuana and a doctor prescribes it. Try not to be so ignorant of the facts.
Michael Hendrickson August 10, 2012 at 01:20 AM
Does anyone know if ssi or Medicaid will cover this for me?..I sure hope so
Karen Ann Campbell August 10, 2012 at 01:39 AM
This state is a joke. There are so many conditions that marijuana can help make a quality of life difference for people. None of which are on the list for the state of NJ. You basically have to be one foot in the grave to qualify for medical marijuana use here. Progress is so frigging slow.
Mattie August 10, 2012 at 11:04 AM
That's right Karen. Another of Christie's personal decisions made to keep the program nearly useless.
Mattie August 10, 2012 at 11:12 AM
Michael, if you are on SS Disability, Medicaid or Medicare, you can be registered as a MM patient for $20 instead of $200 (for a two-year card). But no, they don't actually cover the cost of buying the medical mj itself.
Mattie August 10, 2012 at 12:10 PM
Saying you 'are ignorant of the facts', is not saying YOU are ignorant. Try backing off with implying that this program is wanted only by "stoners" who aren't really sick. There is no need to insult people whose health would benefit from a REAL, well-run and reasonable medical marijuana program, like the other 13 states have. Christie is making sure we don't have a program like that. I don't give a crap about the doctor deciding not to take on "new patients"... you missed MY point. My point was that Christie has set up more restrictions and so-called 'safe guards' than any other state has (with MM programs) and limiting the doctors, and/or by making them paranoid because of requiring 'registration' on some government list to prescribe A MEDICATION, is killing the program before it even gets off the ground. I was not attacking the doctor personally for not accepting new patients. Did you not get the gist that I blame CHRISTIE??
Mattie August 10, 2012 at 12:54 PM
Facts not fiction: http://www.philadelphiaweekly.com/news-and-opinion/New-Jersey-Medical-Marijuana-Law-Comes-With-a-Slew-of-Restrictions.html
barbara August 10, 2012 at 01:09 PM
A bunch of "stoners" trying to get a prescription? What a dumb remark.
suz August 10, 2012 at 01:17 PM
Wow...why must we "blame" Gov Christie for having a plan in place before we end up like California??!!! I am 100% behind his choices, sorry! Oh, by the way, (before someone starts to bash my opinions) my husband is an excellent person to take advantage of his program if he so chooses, BUT making it as "fool proof" as possible should be Gov Christie plan, no?
Randal Graves August 10, 2012 at 01:22 PM
I'm happy people who are sick are finally going to have access to it, Christie stalled the program as long as he could because that's how much he cares about your sickness, The restrictions on this law are comical and yeah you pretty much have to be dead to qualify which is sad. As far as us "stoners" are concerned we have easier access so we don't mind not having cards it's not like all of us go out and visit john doe on the corner to get something most of us get delivery and never even have to leave our homes lol and quite a majority of us "stoners" will pay less for it then the sick folk who are going to line up at the dispensary. MM is not new to Ocean Co, It's actually been available through the back channels for over a year, As long as you know who to call.
pd August 10, 2012 at 02:25 PM
It's in the law. A patient must have be under the care of the prescribing doctor for at least, I think, 12 months before they can have MJ prescribed to them. So much for cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy....
pd August 10, 2012 at 02:29 PM
Not if it forces thousands of people to break the law in order to get the relief that they deserve. Why should a patient have to pay $200 just for the ability to get a prescription? Would you gladly pay $200 cash, out of pocket, for the option of being prescribed pain killers after having your hip replaced?
Mattie August 10, 2012 at 03:29 PM
Lacy, take a deep breath... relax. Get over yourself. OK?
Mattie August 10, 2012 at 03:36 PM
Sue, what exactly has been documented and found "wrong" with California's MM program? They don't seem to have very many serious issues with how things are run. People are getting Rxs from legitimate doctors, because of legitimate medical conditions, going to legitimate dispensaries, and in turn the state is raking in millions, many millions- of revenue, and sick people in California have an alternative to using harsh, chemical pills and treatments. What is so wrong about that? Even if we all agreed that the medical condition list should be somewhat trimmed down, (and I don't agree, but let's just pretend) there is/could be a happy medium instead of just GUTTING the criteria like Christie has. He's waaaay over and beyond the 'reasonable' line.
bayboat August 10, 2012 at 04:41 PM
#1...luv the picture! #2...my back hurts!
Mattie August 10, 2012 at 04:44 PM
More to ponder: In 2010, the Veteran's Administration finally agreed that medical marijuana is a legitimate mode of treating several Service Connected illnesses and symptoms suffered by American vets. BUT, the VA docs can't prescribe MM for their vets because they can't 'go against' federal rulings about class I Controlled dangerous substances. Which is odd, because they certainly don't have any issues with VA doctors prescribing all sorts of opiates/pain killers freely. But yeah.... right? OK, so the VA won't prescribe it, that means the vet must establish himself with one of the very few doctors statewide who are registered to Rx MM. What if the vet has no health insurance because the VA takes care of his health needs as they arise? How could he afford to find a new doctor and pay for visits for the next year or so until that doctor can write an Rx for MM? (IF he will) The other issue is, the VA lists several medical illnesses/symptoms that can be treated with MM. However, NOT ONE of their PTSD, depression, or anxiety related symptoms are on Christie's list of acceptable medical conditions. Screwed again. There has also been more than a few cases of Vets being denied their regular pain meds once they start using MM, and are forced to choose one or the other -- for no legitimate medical reason. Yet Christie is insisting on limiting the THC percentage in all MM to just 10% and no more than 3 strains available- No better than the crappiest street pot. It's BS
Concerned August 10, 2012 at 04:49 PM
Oxicotton,heroin,booze or cigerettes all easy to obtain, but a plant we can grow like a basil plant is not legal W.T.F. - its easy to figure out who's sending $ to elect our lawmakers, war on drugs makes heroin cheap and Mexican pot sellers rich.
Concerned August 10, 2012 at 04:52 PM
The Federal government should stop telling states anything , read the constitution.
roxanne August 10, 2012 at 05:17 PM
gov crisco wants to make it that youre on your death bed before you can get it and yet he wont veto a 50% increase in the tolls we pay everyday just to get to work. and yet those like lacey shawn get their knickers in a twist over medical pot but have no problem with kids buying cigarettes. lacey you more than anyone need to light up and relax.
Mattie August 10, 2012 at 07:35 PM
Yep! And the War on Drugs also 'criminalizes' thousands if not millions of people every year, for nothing worse than possession and use of marijuana. Every day average people going about their business, going to school, working, raising families, hurting no one. Busted with a little pot? Instant criminal; stigma and discrimination included.
Fergus August 10, 2012 at 08:20 PM
Not adding to this conversation, but it's amazing that none of these comments have been deleted. The Patch clearly has an agenda and isn't even trying to hide it. Saw that some of the comments from other articles were deleted and people were complaining - rightfully so - and some admin guy just linked to the T&C's. They obviously delete comments that they just don't agree with, even though they're not violating any terms. What a joke. Keep it real Patch.
Mattie August 10, 2012 at 09:49 PM
As a matter of fact... several comments HAVE been deleted. I just noticed. Apparently someone got upset and flagged my (and a few others?) comments about them being "ignorant of the facts". Also told her to 'relax'... But I guess that was too "mean" huh? She was probably the doctor's wife..... [rolls eyes]
Mark Watson August 10, 2012 at 09:58 PM
Fool proof?! WHO CARES!!! Tax it, sell it, it's the same as booze. Better, when is the last time you heard of a death by auto because of pot? Different qualities just like wine, TAX IT, and throw on a label like prescription drugs or cigarettes. Ready? The actuaries predict Medicare is broke by 2025. Social Security by 2050. now, watch China just stop buying Treasury notes, and collect what they have when they are due. United States is broke, World War III, we all die, and what was that time honored saying? For want of a nail, the shoe was lost. For want of a shoe, the horse was lost. For want of a horse, the fight.... yeah. For want of tax on a lousy joint.

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