Dear friends,

On Jan. 31, the Illinois Department of Health officially began accepting patients to the Opioid Alternative Pilot Program (OAPP), an innovative approach to tackling the devastating opioid crisis in our state.

The OAPP was created by the Alternatives to Opioids Act, which I cosponsored in the Senate last year. It gives patients temporary access to medical cannabis after a doctor certifies that they have a condition for which opioids might be prescribed.

To qualify for this program as a patient, you must:

•    Be an Illinois resident age 21 or older 
•    have been prescribed an opioid or have a health condition or disease for which you could be prescribed an opioid
•    obtain a certification from your physician
•    NOT have a CDL-driver's license or a school bus driver permit
•    NOT be a current participant in the Medical Cannabis Pilot Program

You will need the following documents to apply:

•    Government-issued ID (Current Illinois driver's license or state ID)
•    Proof of address which matches your driver's license or state ID (ie, utility bill, voter's registration card, bank statement)
•    2'x2' color passport photo
•    Application fee -$10 for each 90-day period. Only credit, pre-paid credit, or debit cards are accepted
•    Select a dispensary

After securing these documents, you will need to:

•    Schedule an appointment with your primary care doctor to discuss whether medical cannabis is a treatment alternative to opioids.
•    Ask your doctor to complete an online physician certification confirming your diagnosis.*
•    Once the physician certification has been entered online, you may register for the program.
•    Register online; a $10 registration fee is required.
*Physician certifications are valid for 90-days but can be renewed.

The administrative rules were released and implemented Dec. 1. Anyone who applied on or after Dec. 1 will receive almost immediate access to the program. For individuals who applied online provisional access will be granted by the form of eRegistry card to the dispensary they selected as long as they have a valid email address on file. Individuals who applied via mail will be receiving a letter they can use as their provisional access along with another form of ID to their local dispensary for immediate access while their application is approved and sent out by the department. Those individuals that applied before Dec. 1, and have not received any correspondence from the Department of Public Health in regards to their application should reach out to my office to have the status of their application checked.

If you have any question about your application, this program or any other matters, please contact my office at 773-769-1717 or reach out online.


Sincerely,

Heather A. Steans
State Senator, 7th District

Dear friends,

On Jan. 31, the Illinois Department of Health officially began accepting patients to the Opioid Alternative Pilot Program (OAPP), an innovative approach to tackling the devastating opioid crisis in our state.

The OAPP was created by the Alternatives to Opioids Act, which I cosponsored in the Senate last year. It gives patients temporary access to medical cannabis after a doctor certifies that they have a condition for which opioids might be prescribed.

To qualify for this program as a patient, you must:

  • Be an Illinois resident age 21 or older  
  • have been prescribed an opioid or have a health condition or disease for which you could be prescribed an opioid
  • obtain a certification from your physician
  • NOT have a CDL-driver's license or a school bus driver permit
  • NOT be a current participant in the Medical Cannabis Pilot Program

You will need the following documents to apply:

  • Government-issued ID (Current Illinois driver's license or state ID)
  • Proof of address which matches your driver's license or state ID (ie, utility bill, voter's registration card, bank statement)
  • 2'x2' color passport photo
  • Application fee -$10 for each 90-day period. Only credit, pre-paid credit, or debit cards are accepted
  • Select a dispensary

After securing these documents, you will need to:

  • Schedule an appointment with your primary care doctor to discuss whether medical cannabis is a treatment alternative to opioids.
  • Ask your doctor to complete an online physician certification confirming your diagnosis.*
  • Once the physician certification has been entered online, you may register for the program.
  • Register online; a $10 registration fee is required.

*Physician certifications are valid for 90-days but can be renewed.

The administrative rules were released and implemented Dec. 1. Anyone who applied on or after Dec. 1 will receive almost immediate access to the program. For individuals who applied online provisional access will be granted by the form of eRegistry card to the dispensary they selected as long as they have a valid email address on file. Individuals who applied via mail will be receiving a letter they can use as their provisional access along with another form of ID to their local dispensary for immediate access while their application is approved and sent out by the department. Those individuals that applied before Dec. 1, and have not received any correspondence from the Department of Public Health in regards to their application should reach out to my office to have the status of their application checked.

If you have any question about your application, this program or any other matters, please contact my office at 773-769-1717 or reach out online.

Sincerely,

Heather A. Steans
State Senator, 7th District

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