Louisiana's medical marijuana program jumped its last hoop last week, and yesterday we officially had our first medical marijuana purchase in Baton Rouge.

There are nine total dispensary pharmacies in the state including one here in Lake Charles. Their shipments should be arriving today or tomorrow which means their doors should open this week.

Louisiana joins thirty other states that allow medical marijuana in some form. Even though marijuana is still banned by the federal government, a congressional amendment blocks the Justice Department from interfering with states' medical marijuana programs.

Making the first purchases were a liver cancer patient and Louisiana's first Armed Forces veteran at Capitol Wellness Solutions in Baton Rouge.

Only the Louisiana State University and Southern University agricultural centers are authorized to grow medicinal-grade pot.

The state-wide approved pharmacies will set their own prices. Randy Mire, the owner of Capital Wellness Solutions, said his products will cost anywhere from $99 to $200 depending on the type and strength. Patients will have to pay out of pocket, as insurances do not cover medical marijuana.

Conditions That Quality For Medical Marijuana:

  • Cancer
  • Glaucoma
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Positive status for human immunodeficiency virus
  • Acquired immune deficiency syndrome
  • Cachexia or wasting syndrome
  • Seizure disorders
  • Epilepsy
  • Spasticity
  • Severe muscle spasms
  • Intractable pain
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Muscular dystrophy
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

If you have one of these conditions above, your next question most likely is, "How do I get a prescription?"

Only doctors marijuana-certified in Louisiana by the Louisiana State Board of Medical Examiners can provide “recommendations” for patients who are residents in the state. Patients under the care of a primary care physician who is not marijuana-certified will need to be recommended to a certified doctor.