After some six months of waiting, medical marijuana applications weren't in
high demand yesterday, with only about 10 physicians requesting them from
the state Department of Public Safety.

New rules for the possession of marijuana to treat serious medical
conditions such as cancer, glaucoma or AIDS went into effect yesterday.
They allow the state Narcotics Enforcement Division to begin issuing the
applications.

The majority of application requests came from physicians on Oahu and the
Big Island.

Keith Kamita, administrator of the Public Safety Department's narcotics
division, said most of the information was already given to those who
attended the public hearings last month, and the rules were also posted on
the department's Web site.

The application, however, is not available on-line at the request of
doctors who did not want to be flooded with patients requesting marijuana.

"We've been sending out the applications to the physicians," Kamita said.
"The patients should go to the physicians and they should issue the forms."

Once an application is returned with the $25 annual fee, it will probably
take at least five working days to ensure that the physician is registered
and authorized to administer controlled substances, and to make sure the
check clears, said Kamita.

"If everything is correct, we can turn an application around in five
working days, but the law gives us a leeway of 60 days," he said.

Once the application has cleared the office, the patient will be sent a
receipt to serve as a temporary license to possess up to 3 ounces of
marijuana, three mature marijuana plants and four immature plants, Kamita said.


Newshawk: WallyB
Pubdate: Fri, 29 Dec 2000
Source: Honolulu Star-Bulletin (HI)
Copyright: 2000 Honolulu Star-Bulletin
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Author: Treena Shapiro