DOH Revises Interim Administrative Rules for Medical Cannabis Dispensary Licensing Program
The Hawaii State Department of Health revised interim administrative rules for the medical cannabis licensing program went into effect on Feb. 24. Rules now in place focus on the implementation of the medical cannabis dispensary law and getting the dispensary system up and running.
The revised interim rules focus on six specific areas:
- Legislative changes to HRS Chapter 329D.
- Manufacturing requirements for edible cannabis products.
- Additional product safety measures for all cannabis products.
- Clarification on collection of samples for testing.
- Laboratory testing.
- Hemp production and processing as related to the medical cannabis dispensary system.
The rules apply statewide. More information on the Medical Cannabis Dispensary Program and the rules and can be found at the DOH’s medical cannabis program website health.hawaii.gov/medicalcannabis/.
DOH has posted links to the revised interim rules on the medical cannabis website including an executive summary and frequently asked questions. Questions about the rules should be emailed to [email protected]. The FAQs will be updated as new questions are received.
There are currently 18 licensed retail centers in Hawai‘i. On the Big Island, there are two dispensaries, Big Island Grown and Hawaiian Ethos. Each company has three locations in Hilo, Waimea and Kailua-Kona.
As of Jan. 31, 2022, a statewide total of 33,951 in-state patients and 2,748 caregivers were registered statewide to purchase medical cannabis. The primary reported condition for registered adult patients is severe pain. The primary reported conditions for children under 18 years of age are seizures and severe pain.
Registered patients and their caregivers may purchase up to four ounces of medical cannabis during a 15-consecutive day period and a maximum of eight ounces over a 30-consecutive day period from licensed dispensaries. When bringing medical cannabis home after purchasing it from a dispensary, the medical cannabis must be in a sealed container and not visible to the public.
All use of medical cannabis must be on private property and may not be used in any moving vehicle, at work, at the beach, on hiking trails, or in any other public space. It is illegal to use or possess medical cannabis on any federally owned property such as military installations and national parks.
The revised interim rules will remain in effect until July 1, 2025, or until rules are adopted pursuant to chapter 91 of the Hawaii Revised Statutes (HRS).