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Are Medical Marijuana Cards Public Record?

Are Medical Marijuana Cards Public Record
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In recent years, marijuana laws have evolved significantly, as has the public’s attitude toward the drug. However, despite this progress, there remains much uncertainty as to the privacy aspects of medical marijuana records. Many patients often wonder whether their owning a card is public record.

This question touches on critical concerns about privacy, societal perceptions, and legality. In this article, we’ll explore the intricacies of medical marijuana card privacy to help you understand what information is available to the public.

Who Has Access to My Medical Marijuana Records?

Your medical marijuana records are protected by stringent privacy laws, just like other types of medical records. Generally, these are the parties that have access to them:

  • Healthcare Providers: Your doctors and any other healthcare professionals involved in your care can access your records to make informed decisions about your treatment.
  • Medical Marijuana Dispensaries: Only the dispensary where you are registered can access your records to verify your eligibility to make purchases.
  • Insurance Companies: If you submit claims that involve your medical marijuana treatment, your insurance company may access relevant portions of your records.
  • Legal Authorities: In very specific and limited situations (such as court orders), law enforcement may gain access to your records.

Who Cannot See That I Have a Medical Cannabis Card?

The privacy of medical cannabis records is important to many cardholders. It’s crucial to understand who cannot see that you own a medical cannabis card to ensure peace of mind.

Here’s a concise list of those parties:

  • Employers: Without your explicit consent, employers cannot see whether you have a medical cannabis card. That said, they can subject you to mandatory drug tests.
  • General Public: Your medical cannabis card status is not available to the general public. This information is protected under health information privacy laws.
  • Non-Medical Government Agencies: Agencies not directly involved in healthcare or law enforcement usually do not have the authority to access your medical cannabis information.
  • Insurance Companies: Without your permission, health insurance companies generally do not have access to your medical cannabis card information.

Will a Medical Marijuana Card Show Up on a Background Check?

Generally speaking, medical marijuana card registration does not appear on employment background checks. This is because an MMJ card registration is considered a medical record protected under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). HIPAA laws prevent this type of information from being disclosed without your consent.

Nevertheless, certain positions–particularly those within federal agencies or those requiring security clearances–can involve more stringent checks that investigate your cardholder status.

Does Medical Marijuana Show Up on Background Check in PA?

Possession of a medical marijuana card does not appear on standard background checks in Pennsylvania. The registration of an MMJ card is considered protected health information under HIPAA, meaning it’s kept confidential and is not disclosed in public records or standard background checks.

Does a Medical Marijuana Card Show Up on a Background Check Florida?

In Florida, your status as a medical marijuana cardholder will not appear on a standard background check. This is because medical marijuana registration is considered protected health information under HIPAA. HIPAA laws prevent this type of personal health information from being disclosed without consent.

Medical Marijuana Card Show Up on a Background

Does Buying Weed Show Up on a Background Check?

Marijuana purchases in states where the drug is legal for medical or recreational use will not appear on standard background checks. Background checks are generally concerned with your criminal record, employment history, education, and credit history.

However, if a purchase led to a legal violation or arrest, that information could indeed show up on a criminal background check. It’s also important to note that specific types of background checks, such as those conducted for federal employment or security clearances, may take drug use into account.

Ways to Protect Your Personal Health Information

  • Be Cautious with Online Forms: Only submit personal information through secure, reputable websites. Look for “https://” in the URL and verify the site’s privacy policies.
  • Use Strong, Unique Passwords: For any accounts related to your medical marijuana information, ensure you use strong, unique passwords. Consider using a password manager to keep track of them.
  • Secure Physical Documents: Keep any physical documents related to your medical marijuana card in a safe, secure place, away from common areas, and under lock and key if possible.
  • Limit Sharing: Only provide your personal health information to professionals who absolutely need it. Be wary of sharing such information over the phone or via email without verification of the recipient’s identity.
  • Monitor Your Medical Records: Regularly check your medical records for any unauthorized or unusual activities. Many healthcare providers offer online portals where you can easily access your information.
  • Educate Yourself on Your Rights: Familiarize yourself with the privacy laws in your region to understand your rights and the obligations of those who handle your information.
  • Stay Informed About Data Breaches: Keep an eye out for news about data breaches in the healthcare industry and take steps to protect yourself if your information gets compromised.


Medical cannabis records—including cardholder statuses and purchase histories—are protected under various laws, particularly by HIPAA. This information doesn’t usually appear on background checks, but it still can’t hurt to take proactive measures to protect your personal health information.

If you’re seeking to obtain a medical marijuana card, look no further than the Sanctuary Wellness Institute. Not only can we connect you with a medical marijuana doctor who can approve you for medical cannabis treatment, but we can guide you through the process of applying for an MMJ card.

Book an appointment today to find out whether you’re eligible for a medical cannabis card.

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