Aug 222013
 August 22, 2013

medical marijuana patientA question that I get quite often in my e-mail inbox is ‘how many medical marijuana patients are there in the United States?’ It’s a good question with an answer that is hard to pin down. The main reason that it is hard to pin down is due to the State of California. I posed this question to the head of California NORML once upon a time, and I was told that there is no 100% accurate number due to the fact that California allows doctor’s approvals to designate someone as a medical marijuana patient – they don’t have a card system. So at best they could give me a range that they felt the answer could be found.

Compare that with states like Oregon and Colorado, where it is very easy to figure out how many medical marijuana patients there are. Oregon releases it’s program numbers once every three months. A recent article on TheAnswerPage.Com tried to answer the question of ‘how many medical marijuana patients are there in the United States.’ According to the article, there are 2,421,069 medical marijuana patients in the United States. How they got such an exact number I’m not sure, especially when it involves California, but I’d imagine that’s about as accurate a number as can be found right now.

The article went on to break down each state, and how many medical marijuana patients there are per 1,000 residents. The state with the most medical marijuana patients per 1,000 residents was Colorado at 21.04. Coming in second by a hair is my home state of Oregon at 14.71 medical marijuana patients per 1,000 residents. Josephine County has the highest percentage of medical marijuana patients per residents in Oregon. I’m not sure about Colorado.

New Jersey only has .03 medical marijuana patients per 1,000 residents according to the article, which doesn’t surprise me. New Jersey has the worst medical marijuana program in the country in my opinion due to the political hostility towards medical marijuana by it’s leaders, and the implementation foot dragging that has gone along with it. The .03 medical marijuana patients per 1,000 residents in New Jersey probably go the longest without medicine as well due to the rules of their program. Soon Illinois will join them. All states need to allow patients to grow their own medicine, and allow consistent safe access to those that don’t have the ability to grow their own. Otherwise their medical marijuana programs are just a shell of what they could be, and patients suffer as a result.

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About Johnny Green

Johnny Green is a marijuana activist from Oregon. He has a Bachelor's Degree in Public Policy. Follow Johnny Green on Facebook and Twitter. Also, feel free to email any concerns.
  • Vixxis

    It is mind boggling that the federal government is dragging their feet like a stubborn kid throwing a temper tantrum when it comes to medical marijuana. Despite all of the obvious evidence of the medical benefits and the support of more than 3/4 of the people they contnue to cling to their outdated views while people suffer needlessly. What could possiblly be motivating them to continue with cannabis prohibition. $!!! Seems more like a conspiracy everyday and Im not a conspiracy theory type of individual.

  • joe voll

    Im surprised Colorado and Oregon has MORE Medical Marijuana patients per capita than CALIFORNIA??? That cant be right! Almost anyone could get a script in California.

    • http://www.radicalruss.com RadicalRuss

      It’s hard to tell, but don’t forget California is a state of 36 million people and not every place in California is as weed-laden as LA, SF, and the Emerald Triangle. There are many conservative, older people in California as well.

      • joe voll

        Whats your prediction on what happens in the future with marijuana legalization? Like when Alaska runs a ballot initiative in 2014 and California, Oregon, Nevada, Maine, and Massachusetts runs one in 2016. Lets say the opponents go out and scare all the voters about the KIDS and Marijuana becoming BIG TOBACCO targeting kids! Then all of the initiatives lose.

        Do you see the general public buying into it and changing their stance from “Yes adults should be allowed to use marijuana with no penalty, Yes adults should be allowed to grow marijuana for their own use, Yes there should be a safe legal market for adults to buy marijuana like alcohol rather than them getting it from criminals off the black market”………….TO “NO, adults should be fined thousands of dollars and put into drug courts for using marijuana, NO adults should be put in jail for growing their own marijuana, and NO I rather have marijuana run by gangs and drug cartels than legit stores”.

        If ALL the Marijuana initiatives in 2014 and 2016 lose, whats next after that? How are they going to defend the rights of adults who choose marijuana over alcohol if Marijuana use by kids in CO and WA goes up? Are you worried? Whats going to happen to the medical marijuana programs in the 20 states that have it onces Sativex gets approved? Whats going to happen to the patients that want the real thing and the homegrows?

    • Sarijuana

      Just because they CAN get a script, doesn’t mean they will or need to, right?

  • Jim D Hajny

    I wish Missouri would legalize medical.

  • theskeptic2

    The closest I have ever seen marijuana come to harming anyone was during an air drop. We brought in 1100
    pounds from Jamaica and dropped it in a peanut field in middle Georgia. The bales were dropped from a small plane at 125 feet altitude. One of the bales, about 80 pounds, missed my compadre by only a few feet… but it surely messed up his truck.

    You can read about it in ‘Shoulda Robbed a Bank’
    That’s my contribution to helping point the insanity of prohibition.

    Stay safe and outta trouble…prison ain’t no fun…

  • firetheliberals

    Answer: more than anyone thinks!
    Many informed voters are finding cannabis a solution to medical problems everyday. Especially over 50 folks. This age group is the fastesy growing cannabis population because we need help and we also distrust the medical and pharma industries.
    Florida legalizing mmj will push the cannabis revolution forward even more as the high population of aged residing in fla.

    Once the over 50 voting block embraces cannabis, it is all over for the prohibitionists.

    Granny wants her weed!

    • joe voll

      Not so fast!

      Kevin Sabet just wrote this new book called Reefer Sanity. EVERYONE that reads it is immediately swayed! What do you think about that? People read it get impressed, they then tell their friends and family about the book, they read it, and it continues until it starts dramatically changing the poll numbers and then support for ending marijuana prohibition drops into the teens like it was decades ago. Then what? If that happens, wer DOOMED FOREVER!

      This means theres NOT gonna be those nice marijuana stores were adults could buy marijuana or any legal market for that matter! They want to force you to buy it from drug cartels off the black market. Theres NOT going to be any right to homegrow! You will be put in jail for doing so. Theres NOT gonna be any right to use or possess marijuana like Colorado and Washington state allows. Your gonna be fined and put into drug courts. They want marijuana to be treated like meth.

      http://www.amazon.com/Reefer-Sanity-Seven-Great-Marijuana/dp/0825306981

    • HempShare

      There is at least one housewife on every block in America who smoke cannabis for menstrual cramps. Many do it and don’t realize it because they’ve been using it so long for recreation.

      There is also a grow house on every block. I am a full-time bicycle commuter. We smell everything…trust me! :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000710800571 Cheryl

    I’m moving from KY, which is where I’ve raised my children & had my life for the past 16 years, to move to IL which jut went medicinal. I have Lupus, probably MS & a whole list of other issues. Here, I am a criminal. Disabled with no other legal issues, I helped organically treat my conditions with marijuana. Now that IL has gone medicinal, I packed everything I own & am moving 3 hours from my bf (now ex because the move), my friends & my immediate family. Every single one of them is behind me & my move. I wonder how many people move every year to avoid persecution for organically treating medical conditions. And how many are “on paper” within the court systems because they chose an organic approach to medical treatment. At least 4 of my medical diseases stemmed from prescriptions used to treat the other diseases, and now they punish me for choosing my health over laws that protect no one but the pharmaceutical companies & the law-makers in their pockets.

    • HempShare

      I too am considering moving from NAZIndiana to a medicinal state so I can grow my own and experiment further with the combustible hemp fuel I made.

    • Dr. B

      Good for you Cheryl! Nobody is going to take care of you, but you. Thanks for having the balls to do what you need regardless of your situation.

  • Gman

    I Live in Southern Cali If you need some DANK “Jack Herer”, “Northern Lights”,”Blue Dream”, OG Kush”, Alien OG” Sour D etc.. email me Nfvv@ymail.com and maybe ill give you my number

  • lance

    “Once the over 50 voting block embraces cannabis, it is all over for the prohibitionists”.
    girl, we’re the ones that have been carrying this torch for 40 years!…We just need the over 60 somethings to die off!

    • HempShare

      Tic, Toc…I turn 50 next year. Started voting Democrats & Republicans out at 40. My mom is 78 and now knows her son saved his life with Hemp Seed, RAW Cannabis, & Decarboxylated Cannabis. I’ve asked her and her friends one favor. Just find a Pro-Hemp candidate. I made it simple for them. Just ask who is Pro-Hemp and they will know that person gets the “wink, wink” of the Anti-Establishment.

  • LINDA

    I’ve used MMJ for m.s. for 35 years now.I’v also been diagnosed with lung cancer.I truly an say MMJ has saved my life more than once.