Medical Cannabis Patient Process Overview


Step One: Patient has Medical Complaint

Patient schedules an appointment with their physician.


Step Two: Patient Sees Their Physician

A determination is made by the physician whether the patient would benefit from the therapeutic or palliative use of medical cannabis for their qualifying condition. If yes, a medical certification is issued through the online portal for the patient.

Physicians must create an account at to provide written certifications.


Step Three: Patient Applies with DOH

Patient receives email to create account on Once compete, the patient must wait for DOH approval.


Step Four. Caregiver Applies with DOH

(If applicable)

Some applications, including minor patient applications, require caregivers to be registered. Caregivers will receive an email to create an account on Once complete, the caregiver must wait for DOH approval.


Step Five: Patient Shops at Dispensary

Once the patient or caregiver gets DOH approval, a medical cannabis card will be mailed to the patient or caregiver. The cardholder may then purchase cannabis from a certified dispensary.

Please Note: Patients can NOT start the medical cannabis application process until their physician creates a certification, which will automatically create a patient account on In South Dakota, dispensaries, not pharmacies, sell cannabis. Medical certification is not a prescription.

DOH Website (external):