A medical marijuana caregiver in Oregon is an individual designated by a medical marijuana patient to assist with the medical use of marijuana. Essentially, caregivers purchase cannabis at licensed dispensaries on their patients' behalf. Per Rule 333-008-0085 of the Oregon Administrative Rules (OAR), caregivers may also help with growing patients' cannabis plants or assisting with transporting cannabis products to patients. Additionally, they may produce marijuana products for patients if they (caregivers) are designated as the patients' PRMG (person responsible for a growing site). Oregon's medical marijuana caregivers have the same legal protections as the patients in their care.
Generally, medical marijuana patients who are minors need caregivers in Oregon; parents or legal guardians often serve as their caregivers. Similarly, adults suffering from severe illnesses qualify to get help from caregivers for medical marijuana use. A person can serve as a medical marijuana caregiver for a family member who is a medical cannabis patient.
Becoming a medical marijuana caregiver in Oregon requires a medical marijuana patient designating a person as one. A qualified patient may designate a caregiver when applying to the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program (OMMP) for a new patient's medical marijuana card or changing their grower. Prospective medical marijuana caregivers in Oregon must be at least 18 years of age and must not be their patients' attending physicians.
Medical marijuana patients can apply to the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) for medical marijuana cards online or via mail (paper forms). They can use the Oregon Medical Marijuana Online System for online applications or complete the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program Application Form if they apply using paper forms. Patients can mail completed paper forms to:
Oregon Health Authority/Oregon Medical Marijuana Program
P.O. Box 14450
Portland, OR 97293-0450
In either case, medical marijuana patients must provide their designated caregivers' information and valid government-issued IDs. Prospective caregivers must submit to background checks which cost $35. If all the application requirements are fulfilled, the OHA will mail a patient's medical marijuana card and a caregiver's card to the patient.
Prospective medical marijuana patients in Oregon are required to designate their own caregivers. The state does not maintain a database of medical marijuana caregivers from which patients who need help administering medical marijuana can choose. Generally, prospective medical patients can designate known and trustworthy persons like close relatives as their medical marijuana caregivers. However, such designated persons must be 18 years or older and reside in the state. In Oregon, a medical marijuana patient may only have one caregiver.
Registered medical marijuana caregivers in Oregon can purchase, possess, and transport marijuana and marijuana products for patients in their care. Per Rule 333-008-0080(1) of the Oregon Administrative Rules (ORA), a medical marijuana caregiver and their patient may jointly possess up to 24 ounces of usable marijuana per time. Oregon Liquor and Cannabis Commission (OLCC) Rule 845-025-28000(4)(a) provides a further breakdown of the amount of usable marijuana a caregiver can purchase daily on their patient's behalf. These are:
In Oregon, medical marijuana patients can authorize their caregivers to grow marijuana at home on their behalf. However, caregivers may only cultivate a maximum of six mature plants, 12 immature plants, and 18 marijuana seedlings jointly with their patients per time (Rule 333-008-0080(1) of the ORA). Patients must provide the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program (OMMP) with the names and addresses of the caregivers who grow marijuana on their behalf.