DPHHS reports big drop in Montana medical marijuana registry numbers

Posted at 11:19 AM, Nov 03, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-03 13:19:20-04

More than 4,000 patients have been removed from Montana’s medical marijuana registry since new rules for the system went into effect on August 31st.

The Montana Department of Public Health & Human Services released its October report on the registry.

It shows 7,785 registered medical marijuana patients – down from 12,436 in September, and the lowest number since 2013.

On August 31st, a law restricting each medical marijuana provider to serving only three patients took effect.

It left about 8,600 people without a provider.

DPHHS had already contacted people on the registry to let them know what steps they could take.

After the deadline, they gave patients 30 days to find another provider or become their own.

”About half let us know that they either didn’t want to be on the registry anymore or they wanted to become their own provider,” said DPHHS public information officer Jon Ebelt. “Then about half did not respond.”

Anyone who didn’t respond had their card revoked.

Those people will be able to join the registry again, but they will have to go through the full application process.

Montana voters will decide the future of the three-patient limit in next week’s election.

Initiative 182 would loosen several restrictions on the state medical marijuana system and eliminate the limit on number of patients.