Grow your own or choose a Caregiver?
Why do patients need a Caregiver?
Patients will choose a caregiver because they don't know where to buy cannabis or because they don't have the time, space or knowledge to grow their own cannabis. Cannabis is an annual flowering dioecious herb, and can require a skilled or knowledgeable gardener to produce medicinal quality flowers. Initial costs to create your own grow room could easily be a thousand dollars or more, and the operation requires a daily investment of time and attention to both plant needs and system maintenance. Optimal growth requires precise conditions. For example air temperature, humidity, and CO2 content must all be controlled with mechanical equipment. You must be able to engineer your room's electrical, heating, cooling and ventilation systems to provide the atmosphere your plants need to grow, and to prevent mold and rot problems to your grow space. Hydroponic grow systems must be individualized to fit your room and require constant attention. Growing in dirt is lower maintenance, but poses it's own challenges such as disposal of the used dirt itself. And no matter what type of system is used, you may still need a caregiver's assistance in choosing and obtaining seeds or clones to start your plants.
How do I choose a good Caregiver?
Look for a caregiver who is a skilled technician and will provide the type of cannabis that's best for your needs. If you don't know what strain's best for you, a good caregiver should be willing and able to help you make that determination, whether through research or trial and error. Some caregivers will deliver directly to you (within a limited distance) while others prefer that you come to them. Caregivers should provide an uninterrupted supply of medical grade marijuana to their patients. It should be packaged in a zip lock baggie with a label that contains the price, the weight of the contents, the name of the strain, the name of the grower, the date it was harvested and a medicinal use only warning.
After the patient and caregiver agree on the terms of service, a Patient/Caregiver Agreement can be signed by both patient and caregiver. This contract affirms the commitment expected of each, and is the framework of the patient/caregiver relationship. A caregiver should never try to pressure their patients to buy more cannabis than they need and the patient should never ask for more than they are allowed to have. A patient should always pay for services as they are rendered, and in accordance with the Agreement. Honesty and reliability are the foundation of a successful patient/caregiver relationship. Remember, as the patient you have the right to choose your own caregiver. If your present caregiver is not meeting your needs, we are here to help, whether you choose to try to improve that relationship, or find another.
If you are interested in becoming a subscriber caregiver, and a member of the Michigan Medical Marijuana Association community, please be patient. We will have further information about becoming a caregiver, caregiver training, and information about many other caregiver topics in the coming weeks. We are creating a unique way for caregivers to advertise their services and display their abilities with images.
Our forums are a great source for information for prospective caregivers, with many topics and hundreds of threads of discussion.