Medical marijuana is rapidly evolving, so we understand how the newness can seem overwhelming.
Ben Cook Jr., co-founder at Canna Wellness Clinics, can relate. Cook, a lawyer who uses medical marijuana to help treat anxiety, is still getting used to picking up legal marijuana like he would any other medication from the pharmacy.
“As someone with anxiety, you may feel out of place or too nervous to talk to someone about your problems,” Cook said. “We get it because we’re all patients, too. We know what it’s like to be confused and scared to start a new treatment plan, especially in a world where there’s still such a heavy stigma.”
Inevitably, you may have doubts about medical marijuana or your first visit to Canna Wellness Clinics. But, guess what? You don’t have to be an expert to walk through our doors.
We’re here to detail what to expect during your first visit, including how we provide a comfortable experience, the types of questions to prepare for, and the qualifying conditions needed to obtain a Florida Medical Marijuana Card.
Proving a Comfortable Experience
Canna Wellness Clinics is an upscale destination backed by time and money to ensure patients feel like VIPs. We hired doctors and patient counselors who are well-versed in the medical effects of marijuana and dedicate themselves to helping our patients.
This expertise helps break down any stigmas of medical marijuana. We don’t run a clinic to wear tie-dye t-shirts and bask in stoner culture. Our goal is to help you find medicinal relief that’s right for you.
“The best way I see our patient counselors helping those who are overwhelmed is by making them feel like they’re joining a family,” Cook said. “It’s like being a fan of a sports team that’s out-of-network — when you see someone else with that special hat or jersey, you instantly feel a bond with them.”
Upon arrival, you will fill out state-required paperwork and relax in our waiting room. You’ll find ChiveTV playing in the background and you can help yourself to coffee or chocolates and relax. This is the first step in providing what we hope is a comfortable experience.
When we’re ready for you, a patient counselor will lead you into an exam room to take vitals like height, weight, and blood pressure. The doctor will discuss and review your medical history and any ongoing issues you’re dealing with.
If the doctor recommends medical marijuana to you, you’ll sit with one of our highly-trained patient counselors. They’ll help you apply for the medical marijuana card with the State of Florida. After listening to your symptoms, the patient counselors will recommend a treatment plan, including specific strains to try, and explaining the different methods of ingestion and application.
Your connection with us doesn’t stop once we perform the exam. We encourage you to stay in touch with our patient counselors, using them as a resource to call about strain recommendations and technical how-tos for medication application.
What Types of Questions Are Asked?
Think of Canna Wellness Clinics as a judgment-free zone. We want to provide a worry-free experience the second you walk in the door. Honesty is key here.
From our experience, patients can be shy when giving an honest history of their marijuana use. We won’t question any recreational use you may have had in the past. It helps us know more about your body and what it has experienced. Coyness is kryptonite.
For your first appointment, we’ll inquire about your symptoms, any medication you’re taking or have tried in the past, and your past experiences with marijuana — either for medicinal purposes or for recreational use.
“Knowing a patient’s marijuana history is important because it helps the doctors know how much to recommend and in what administration routes,” Cook said. “We can’t ‘turn you in’ for illegally smoking marijuana in your past, nor would we want to. But we do need to know your history to help you with your future.”
If a patient is unfamiliar with medical marijuana, doctors and patient counselors are able to bring them up to speed.
Canna Wellness Clinics uses a variety of resources, such as charts, pictures, and educational material for patients to learn more about medical marijuana. Our goal is to provide a 1-on-1 setting to answer any questions so you leave our office feeling confident in what to do next.
It’s important to remember our doctors and patient counselors have seen and heard it all thanks to years of experience. No question or topic is off-limits.
“We’ll never look down upon you for your experience (or lack thereof) with marijuana. In fact, we’re excited when we get questions because it means we get to show people the wonderful world of medical marijuana,” Cook said.
Understanding Qualifying Conditions
We touched on this briefly in our guide to obtaining a medical marijuana card in Florida, but here’s a reminder of the broad scope in which you can qualify for a card.
Many of these qualifying conditions are chronic, debilitating illness you’re familiar with, like cancer, epilepsy, HIV/AIDS, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).
A common misnomer is that you need to have one of these conditions to qualify for a medical marijuana card. The Florida Statute for Medical Marijuana also includes “medical conditions of the same kind or class,” which is a fancy way of saying there is leeway in the interpretation of which conditions qualify. This could include anything from anxiety and depression to sleep disorders.
“Because medical marijuana can help so many conditions, this category is incredibly useful for getting people relief,” Cook said. “Gone are the days where you have to be dying to treat yourself with natural medicine. It boils down to whether the doctor believes medical marijuana can improve your condition.”
What if I Don’t Qualify?
While we can’t give you a false sense of security in saying there’s a 100% approval rate for medical marijuana cards, consider these events rare. But it’s important to be aware of the possibility. This can occasionally happen if one of our doctors determines it isn’t the best course of treatment for you.
The staff works diligently to determine a proper diagnosis, so there’s a chance the doctor may refer you back to your primary care physician to recommend another course of action. Other times, the doctor may want to run more tests before drawing a conclusion.
We are in business for medicinal purposes; not for recreational use. Our doctors go through each step to put you on an effective treatment plan. Conning your way through an appointment helps no parties involved.
In the event a patient doesn’t qualify, you are free to get a second opinion from another doctor. We also don’t collect payment if you’re not approved.
Additionally, we can walk you through our line of CBD products and start a regimen tailored to you. You don’t need a medical marijuana card to buy these products since there isn’t any THC in them.
If you haven’t booked your first visit at Canna Wellness Clinics yet, our online scheduler makes it easy to set up an appointment. Contact us at 561-286-7691 or reach out to us online to get started on your path to relief.