WayofLeaf is proud to have helped over 80,000 people apply for a medical marijuana card over the past few years.
Recently, we noticed an increase in MMJ card requests, which is surprising given that adult-use cannabis legalization continues to increase across the United States.
We conducted a survey of 155 recent MMJ applicants on WayofLeaf to see what was behind the spike.
Clearly, the ongoing pandemic has resulted in increased levels of stress and anxiety. What’s surprising is the volume (85%) of potential MMJ applicants that see medical marijuana as a tangible option to help cope.
Here are some additional highlights from the survey.
Pandemic-Related Anxiety Is on the Rise, and People Want an MMJ Card to Help Cope
We asked our survey respondents to detail the primary reason(s) driving their interest in obtaining an MMJ card. The most popular reason (cited by nearly one-in-three participants) was to help deal with anxiety and stress.
The two other most common reasons that galvanized interest in MMJ cards were diagnosed medical conditions (27.7%) and general pain relief (23.1%). Surprisingly, sleep issues accounted for just 5.2% of the vote.
People Want an MMJ Card in 2023, and They Want It Now
As we’ve already mentioned, the pandemic was one of the largest factors driving people to apply for an MMJ card in 2022. In fact, nearly one out of ten (11.6%) said COVID-related stress and anxiety was what initially prompted their interest in obtaining medical marijuana.
The most common reason, however, was attributable to a new or recent diagnosis of a medical condition (25.9%), followed by a recommendation from a family member or friend (22.4%).
People Want to Apply for Their MMJ Card Online
The vast majority (nearly 70%) of current and potential MMJ applicants say they would prefer to apply for their MMJ card online, rather than in a clinic. This dramatically contrasts the percentage of people (20.3%) who would prefer to apply directly through their physician.
The good news is that there is an increasing number of professional, reliable telehealth services out there with excellent doctors that can help patients get their medical cannabis cards as quickly and cost-effectively as possible.
However, there is also no shortage of scam organizations just looking to get your personal information, so it’s all about knowing where to find the best and most trusted online doctor services.
The Landscape for MMJ Demand Has Changed Over the Past Year
The need for medical cannabis is certainly on the up, with 70% of MMJ card applicants saying they’ve needed cannabis more in the past 12 months. Clearly, this is a direct result of the ongoing pandemic and the many stressors that have come along with it.
New MMJ Cardholders Want to Use Cannabis Under a Doctor’s Guidance
A very surprising 71% of participants also claimed they would prefer to use medical marijuana under the direct guidance of a physician, rather than by themselves.
This data clearly outlines the ongoing need (and demand) for medical marijuana programs, as well as specialized cannabis doctors – even in states that have recently voted for the legalization of full-scale recreational marijuana use.
Patients Aren’t Impressed With Current MMJ Card Application Processes
In terms of satisfaction with current MMJ card application processes, survey data returned a mixed bag of results. For example, more than half of respondents said they were either “unsatisfied” or “very unsatisfied” with their state’s process.
Clearly, there needs to be more done to educate and assist with the MMJ card application process – hence the ongoing need for reliable specialists and doctors such as the ones we’ve referenced above.
People Are Very Confident in the Efficacy of Medical Cannabis
One of the biggest takeaways from the survey results is that it clearly outlined why people are still interested in using medical cannabis: because they believe it legitimately works. In fact, 85% of survey participants said they were “confident” or “very confident” that medical marijuana could help them in the long term.
Conclusion: Medical Marijuana Card Statistics for 2023
All in all, the increase in MMJ card requests that we’ve seen here recently at WayofLeaf appears to be driven by high levels of stress and anxiety, partially exacerbated by the ongoing global pandemic.
Another major factor is that, as patients are diagnosed with a qualifying medical condition, more and more are turning straight to medical cannabis, often through personal recommendations.
While MMJ sentiment is at an all-time high, with users confident it can help them with their specific health condition, accessibility and information seem to be the limiting factors holding people back.
This is a problem that we here at WayofLeaf are trying to solve. To date, we’ve put together over 400 informative articles on medical cannabis, as well as direct state-by-state guides that outline specific online application processes that can be used with trusted, reliable MMJ telemedicine specialist providers.