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Ohio Physicians Permitted to Apply for Certificate to Recommend Medical Marijuana

March 19, 2018

Physicians in Ohio are now permitted to apply for a Certificate to Recommend (“CTR”) medical marijuana for their patients. The State Medical Board of Ohio anticipates the medical board licensure team will present the first CTR applications at its meeting on April 11, 2018.

The CTR in Ohio is not a separate license issued by the State Medical Board of Ohio, but rather is an endorsement to the physician’s existing license. To apply for the CTR endorsement, physicians simply log on to the e-license website, locate their active medical license, and select the option to apply for a CTR. Physicians will be able to upload evidence of their compliance with CTR requirements in the e-license portal. To be sure, the medical marijuana program in Ohio will not be operational until at least September 2018.

As set forth in regulations adopted by the State Medical Board of Ohio, eligibility for a CTR requires the applicant meet the following: (1) holds an active license to practice medicine and surgery, or osteopathic medicine; (2) has been granted and maintains access to OARRS; (3) holds an active DEA registration; (4) has not had a license to prescribe controlled substances or dangerous drugs denied, restricted, or subject to disciplinary action by the DEA or applicable state body holding jurisdiction based on inappropriate prescribing of a controlled substance or dangerous drug; (5) has completed at least two hours of CME in a course certified by the Ohio State Medical Association or the Ohio Osteopathic Association that provides education as to Ohio’s qualifying medical conditions and treating such conditions with medical marijuana, including drug interactions; and (6) the physician has no financial relationship with a medical marijuana entity.[1]

CTRs will be renewed upon renewal of the physician’s medical license, there is no separate fee to apply for a CTR. For CME courses available to physicians interested in obtaining a CTR endorsement, please visit

Physicians should also be aware of existing contractual obligations, medical staff rules, and employer policies impacting their ability to obtain a CTR or recommending medical marijuana. Prior to making an application for a CTR and ultimately making a patient recommendation, applicants should carefully review and consider all applicable laws, rules, regulations, and policies to make certain they are not in breach of an existing obligation.

For more information on this topic, please contact:

David Abromowitz at or 614.223.9327.

Thomas Kern at or 614.223.9369.

Brian DePew at or 614.223.9337.

[1] O.A.C. § 4731-32-02