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News! Medical Marijuana Bills To Hit Senate Floor Next Week!


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Richard Richardville has said, via a news release, that the two bills based by the Michigan House will be on the Senate Floor next week! These were the bills to reintorduce dispensaries and concentrates. I'v been posting this everywhere and nobody seems to give a darn. Hopefully this garners more than three views.

 

Source: House of Reps Employee

 

I won't post the email just out of respect for her privacy

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right it hits the floor on the 16th as I recall.. lets hope they dont bastardize the bejeezus outta it, I did read that he who should not be named, is now having a change of heart..  (dont believe it myself) but we shall see how it goes.. if you didnt know this bill will also give growers an avenue to dispose of there overages.. legally

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Richard Richardville has said, via a news release, that the two bills based by the Michigan House will be on the Senate Floor next week! These were the bills to reintorduce dispensaries and concentrates. I'v been posting this everywhere and nobody seems to give a darn. Hopefully this garners more than three views.

 

Source: House of Reps Employee

 

I won't post the email just out of respect for her privacy

We are up to speed with the issues here. Please enjoy the forum archives. People are working in Lansing with congressional offices, and we are a busy bunch where it comes to contacting our elected officials. Welcome aboard nugget.

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LARA proposes broad changes to medical marijuana program

11 Jul, 2014

 

 

A first-in-the-nation paperless system is envisioned by LARA; the losers in the proposal include the poor, rural residents, the elderly

 

Capitol-Building-during-Anti-Schuette-ca

by Rick Thompson/July 11, 2014

LANSING- Although you won’t find it announced in any press release or on the government’s website, big changes are being proposed for Michigan’s Medical Marihuana Program (MMP) by the government agency charged with overseeing the state’s 150,000 registered participants.

Changes to the language of the medical marijuana Act must be approved through the legislature- and those proposals require a supermajority vote in both the House and Senate. That’s a tough path to travel, so the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) proposes to manipulate the Administrative Rules instead. 

LARA submitted the proposed changes for the MMP to the Secretary of State earlier this year, along with a Regulatory Impact Statement and Cost-Benefit Analysis.

Some of the proposed changes include making Michigan’s MMP the first in the nation to go completely electronic and refuse any paper applications; discarding all discounted rates on MMP registration fees given to Medicaid and SSI recipients; reducing the 2-year fee from $100 to $60; changing the composition of the New Conditions Panel, giving them 4-year terms, and cutting public input on adding new illnesses from 60 days to just 5; establish new registration fees for caregivers; eliminating many of the acceptable forms of personal identification, including military identification, tribal identification and Permanent resident alien identification cards.

Changes are proposed for every section of the current Administrative Rules, and some sections are set to be eliminated completely, but the biggest change will be the abandoning of paperwork in the registration process. The change to a paperless system is driven from the Department’s failure to adequately process paper applications and change forms in the past, and the Impact Statement carries this phrase: “There are no other states that explicitly require, or to the Department’s knowledge, utilize an electronic registration system.”

The Department also recognizes that this will not be satisfactory for those who are not computer-savvy, including the elderly, the disabled and the poor. “Residents of rural areas with inconsistent internet service may complain about needing to submit applications online,” the Impact Statement acknowledges.

A Public Hearing to discuss the proposed changes will take place on Wednesday, July 16 at 2PM in the G. Mennen Williams Building, 525 W Ottawa at Pine Street.

View the proposed changes to the Administrative Rules, dated May 22, HERE.

Read the Impact Statement HERE.

More information about the proposed changes will be available through The Compassion Chronicles in the days leading up to the hearing.

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Good stuff GregS. I see that people are up to date and actually using this forum. Excuse my disgruntled sentiments as a result of a few forums out there being dead space. Glad to find a place to stay up to speed.

Thank you. Please have a cuppa coffee with me while you participate. 

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LARA proposes broad changes to medical marijuana program

11 Jul, 2014

 

A first-in-the-nation paperless system is envisioned by LARA; the losers in the proposal include the poor, rural residents, the elderly

 

Capitol-Building-during-Anti-Schuette-ca

by Rick Thompson/July 11, 2014

LANSING- Although you won’t find it announced in any press release or on the government’s website, big changes are being proposed for Michigan’s Medical Marihuana Program (MMP) by the government agency charged with overseeing the state’s 150,000 registered participants.

Changes to the language of the medical marijuana Act must be approved through the legislature- and those proposals require a supermajority vote in both the House and Senate. That’s a tough path to travel, so the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) proposes to manipulate the Administrative Rules instead. 

LARA submitted the proposed changes for the MMP to the Secretary of State earlier this year, along with a Regulatory Impact Statement and Cost-Benefit Analysis.

Some of the proposed changes include making Michigan’s MMP the first in the nation to go completely electronic and refuse any paper applications; discarding all discounted rates on MMP registration fees given to Medicaid and SSI recipients; reducing the 2-year fee from $100 to $60; changing the composition of the New Conditions Panel, giving them 4-year terms, and cutting public input on adding new illnesses from 60 days to just 5; establish new registration fees for caregivers; eliminating many of the acceptable forms of personal identification, including military identification, tribal identification and Permanent resident alien identification cards.

Changes are proposed for every section of the current Administrative Rules, and some sections are set to be eliminated completely, but the biggest change will be the abandoning of paperwork in the registration process. The change to a paperless system is driven from the Department’s failure to adequately process paper applications and change forms in the past, and the Impact Statement carries this phrase: “There are no other states that explicitly require, or to the Department’s knowledge, utilize an electronic registration system.”

The Department also recognizes that this will not be satisfactory for those who are not computer-savvy, including the elderly, the disabled and the poor. “Residents of rural areas with inconsistent internet service may complain about needing to submit applications online,” the Impact Statement acknowledges.

A Public Hearing to discuss the proposed changes will take place on Wednesday, July 16 at 2PM in the G. Mennen Williams Building, 525 W Ottawa at Pine Street.

View the proposed changes to the Administrative Rules, dated May 22, HERE.

Read the Impact Statement HERE.

More information about the proposed changes will be available through The Compassion Chronicles in the days leading up to the hearing.

 

Ok so all this  has been striked out, is this saying we loose hippa/???
 
333.121 Confidentiality. Rescinded. 
 Rule 21. (1) Except as provided in subrules (2) and (3) of this rule, Michigan medical 
marihuana program information shall be confidential and not subject to disclosure in any form or 
manner. Program information includes, but is not limited to, all of the following: 
 (a) Applications and supporting information submitted by qualifying patients. 
 (b) Information related to a qualifying patient's primary caregiver. 
 © Names and other identifying information of registry identification cardholders. 
 (d) Names and other identifying information of pending applicants and their primary caregivers. 
 (2) Names and other identifying information made confidential under subrule (1) of this rule 
may only be accessed or released to authorized employees or contractors of the department as 
necessary to perform official duties of the department pursuant to the act, including the 
production of any reports of non-identifying aggregate data or statistics. 
 (3) The department shall verify upon a request by law enforcement personnel whether a registry 
identification card is valid, without disclosing more information than is reasonably necessary to 
verify the authenticity of the registry identification card. 
 (4) The department may release information to other persons only upon receipt of a properly 
executed release of information signed by all individuals with legal authority to waive 
confidentiality regarding that information, whether a registered qualifying patient, a qualifying 
patient's parent or legal guardian, or a qualifying patient's registered primary caregiver. The 
release of information shall specify what information the department is authorized to release and 
to whom. 
 (5) Violation of these confidentiality rules may subject an individual to the penalties provided 
for under section 6(h)(4) of the act. 
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The electronic registration system would be quite a boon.  We are paperless in my practice, and since we are the ones preparing the applications, this will help our patients.  The electronic medical record is not only more efficient than paper forms, many insurance programs are also mandating electronic filing, so this should come as no surprise to medical practices.

 

I'll review the rest of the proposed rule changes, but this one is a winner for patients.

 

Dr. Bob

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Will you pay for us too?

 

;-)

 

 There is problems with this type of system and not allowing other types of filing.  I mean,.. like your G.P. is gonna want to fill out his form, fill out your form, wait for you to find your caregiver and then pay? how? How do you submit a doctor rec and then fill out the rest of your stuff?  and make payment?  ;-)

 

 

 There is some issues that need to be fixed.  I suspect signature and verification will be horrible. 

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Let alone, don't forget upwards of 50% of people that showed up at my CC did not use the internet.  Either lack of access, money, or just old assedness kept them from it.

 

 I would suggest allowing paper applications still, just charge a basic processing fee for doing so.  Even if phased out in 4-8 years or wtvr

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I guess I should expand a bit,... for businesses like yourself Dr Bob and the other main ten in the state; this will be good as you are full service station for this issue;... but what about the other 1000 physicians who just put a signature on a piece of paper for a few/several of their patients?

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The cost of change forms goes from ten to twenty five dollars for all cg attestations, calling them instead processing fees, to include the initial one. Last I heard they are making money hand over fist. I do not like that. Can we find the accounting for the fund? I don't want to see the legislature give the fund balance away to LEO again. Bringing the cost of a patient application down to sixty dollars for two years is great. We can testify against the caregiver increase and insist the discounted patient fee remain. 

 

 

Perhaps we should demand that the review panel for new conditions must include some patients. 

 

 

Ok so all this  has been striked out, is this saying we loose hippa/???
 
333.121 Confidentiality. Rescinded. 
 Rule 21. (1) Except as provided in subrules (2) and (3) of this rule, Michigan medical 
marihuana program information shall be confidential and not subject to disclosure in any form or 
manner. Program information includes, but is not limited to, all of the following: 
 (a) Applications and supporting information submitted by qualifying patients. 
 (b) Information related to a qualifying patient's primary caregiver. 
 © Names and other identifying information of registry identification cardholders. 
 (d) Names and other identifying information of pending applicants and their primary caregivers. 
 (2) Names and other identifying information made confidential under subrule (1) of this rule 
may only be accessed or released to authorized employees or contractors of the department as 
necessary to perform official duties of the department pursuant to the act, including the 
production of any reports of non-identifying aggregate data or statistics. 
 (3) The department shall verify upon a request by law enforcement personnel whether a registry 
identification card is valid, without disclosing more information than is reasonably necessary to 
verify the authenticity of the registry identification card. 
 (4) The department may release information to other persons only upon receipt of a properly 
executed release of information signed by all individuals with legal authority to waive 
confidentiality regarding that information, whether a registered qualifying patient, a qualifying 
patient's parent or legal guardian, or a qualifying patient's registered primary caregiver. The 
release of information shall specify what information the department is authorized to release and 
to whom. 
 (5) Violation of these confidentiality rules may subject an individual to the penalties provided 
for under section 6(h)(4) of the act. 

 

 

The text of this confidentiality clause duplicates that in the act itself. They are still compelled to abide by confidentiality rules per sec. 6(h).

Edited by GregS
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Good point Mal, especially since I am working to get primary docs to do their own rather than send to me.

 

Thinking about it, we have a service to help those that went to hotel clinics or got their certs through the mail to help them establish a real doctor/patient relationship.  Perhaps we could work with other primary care doctors and patients, have them bring their forms in and we could submit them electronically.  In medicine, we have 'billing companies' that do such things for very nominal costs.  We could probably package it with follow ups and other services.  We might even work out something easy for the patients to do on their own (fill in the information in a simple form on line rather than deal with an adobe document) that could be accessed with assistance at local businesses. 

 

There are many options to help the community, many of which could be easily offered for free, to help with the transition.

 

Since I handle most of rural N. Michigan and this is no problem for my practice, I think the concerns expressed about those patients will be minimized.  We'll just take it in stride as we always do.  Were already set up for most of it as I said, but that is simply good insight into the process, something we've always had from the bona fide dr/pt relationship to how to arrange the tables at the clinics.

 

Dr. Bob

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Let alone, don't forget upwards of 50% of people that showed up at my CC did not use the internet.  Either lack of access, money, or just old assedness kept them from it.

 

 I would suggest allowing paper applications still, just charge a basic processing fee for doing so.  Even if phased out in 4-8 years or wtvr

Requiring cert docs to offer online submittals would help. This wouldn't cover change forms but maybe require cert docs to offer electronic change forms too. The doc can decide if he/she will charge for this additional service. And I realize that many patients live very far from the cert doc. But it would be a good start.

 

But in a big state like Michigan with huge expanses of desolate areas, we are simply not ready for a state-wide requirement for online anything. A parallel system would be ideal, offering electronic and mail-in options.

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I do agree that a parallel system would be best to transition.  There are a couple of good ways to encourage use of electronic records, starting with reduced processing times for those that file electronically.  I think this is a good idea, but it is a little too radical to implement all at once.  But IMMEDIATELY adding the ability to file electronically would help many patients.  But both your points are well taken, there still needs to be a way to file on paper (unless I am mistaken in my initial review of the new rules, both will still be required).

 

I think Mal hit it on the head, it is one more step to discourage the primaries that do three a month from participating.  The full service clinics set up to do hundreds a month will transition in a week.

 

Dr. Bob

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Good point Mal, especially since I am working to get primary docs to do their own rather than send to me.

 

Thinking about it, we have a service to help those that went to hotel clinics or got their certs through the mail to help them establish a real doctor/patient relationship.  Perhaps we could work with other primary care doctors and patients, have them bring their forms in and we could submit them electronically.  In medicine, we have 'billing companies' that do such things for very nominal costs.  We could probably package it with follow ups and other services.  We might even work out something easy for the patients to do on their own (fill in the information in a simple form on line rather than deal with an adobe document) that could be accessed with assistance at local businesses. 

 

There are many options to help the community, many of which could be easily offered for free, to help with the transition.

 

Since I handle most of rural N. Michigan and this is no problem for my practice, I think the concerns expressed about those patients will be minimized.  We'll just take it in stride as we always do.  Were already set up for most of it as I said, but that is simply good insight into the process, something we've always had from the bona fide dr/pt relationship to how to arrange the tables at the clinics.

 

Dr. Bob

I appreciate your enthusiasm, but wonder how that would work in practice with other physicians. If you remain compliant with patient and caregiver interests I see no problem with that. But Mal is right. There should remain a hard copy method to apply.

 

Rather than hide our heads where the sun don't shine and be reluctant to push the limits, we own these issues and I will remain bold about it. It is that attitude that will carry us against the moves to diminish our protections, and instead work toward more liberal use. I will not cower before the government. The impetus is ours, and they cannot stop us without a nasty fight. We made a big splash at the initial rules hearings. I remember Swampy et al giving great testimony. It can be done again when we get up on our hind feet to stand tall.

Edited by GregS
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Yea,... I mean,. IF and I say IF, the department develops a GOOD online application process(unlikely at first if using history of dept) it should be ok for more than half of patients immediately IMO.

 

I mean, if it works, it will be super ez for me,  but I am thinking about others.

 

I think payment may be an issue, I think physicians writing under 50 rec's a year will be an issue, I think caregiver stuff will be torked,  will they still require submission of ID or  just ID number(I realize SoS is in for verification, but in what manner) and verification of Dr certification.  It would seem hijacking of a dr number should make online app's very sketchy and in that case the Dr office may have extensive verification issues with the dept.

 

Much of this depends on how they actually plan to setup the application process.  We merely have an outline of it currently.  I mean, it would be nice if you can setup an account and a doctor(secretary) can merely enter the recommendation and then a patient can then access it later and fill out the remainder of an application prior to filing.

 

 But I still think paper app's should be available for 4 years minimum for a transition phase.

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I mean, how many people ya know who go get their recommendation now and then will file it the next month when they get paid.

 

I just see some issues that will need to be answered and addressed.  Add in my complete lack of faith in LARA/MDCH in implementing said program for the last 5 years,... I remain wary. :-)

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I guess I should expand a bit,... for businesses like yourself Dr Bob and the other main ten in the state; this will be good as you are full service station for this issue;... but what about the other 1000 physicians who just put a signature on a piece of paper for a few/several of their patients?

 

OMG

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