How do I obtain Medical Marijuana?
In order to be approved for Medical Marijuana, you must have a written and verifiable recommendation from a California licensed physician. Under California State Law Prop 215, once you have obtained a physician’s recommendation, you can legally possess, consume and grow your Medicinal Marijuana.
What is a “recommendation”?
A Medical Marijuana “recommendation” is a statement (generally written) from a doctor that approves your use of marijuana for symptomatic relief for your illness or condition.   We expect that you will use it in a responsible manner.  The recommendation is not a prescription.  It is merely a statement from the physician that expresses his or her opinion that you may benefit from the use of Medical Marijuana.
Do I need to be referred to The Berkeley Clinic for an evaluation?
No. If you feel that you have a medical condition whose symptoms may be helped by Medical Marijuana then The Berkeley Clinic would be happy evaluate and educate you.
Who is eligible for Medical Marijuana?
If you suffer from any of the following medical ailments, you should consider Medical Marijuana as an alternative route to bringing relief from the associated symptoms of your illness or the side effects of existing medications:
Chronic pain
HIV/AIDS related symptoms
Degenerative Joint Disease
Migraine Headaches
Crohn’s Disease
Multiple Sclerosis
Irritable Bowel Syndrome
…or “any other serious illness for which marijuana provides relief ". There are a very wide range of illnesses and conditions that have shown symptomatic improvement with the use of medical marijuana.
What might disqualify me from eligibility for Medical Marijuana?
  1. Age less than 18 years
  2. No proof of California residency
  3. Currently on parole or probation
  4. History of hypersensitivity or allergy to Cannibus
How might I benefit by using Medicinal Marijuana for these illnesses?
Here are a few examples of how Medical Marijuana helps reduce symptoms of various diseases:
  1. Stimulates appetite and relieves cachexia (physical wasting associated with AIDS and cancer).
  2. Controls nausea and vomiting associated with cancer chemotherapy.
  3. Decreases intraocular (inside the eyeball) pressure and assists in relief of glaucoma.
  4. Pain control for a variety of chronic-pain syndromes and other conditions.
  5. Helps control neurological and movement disorders, such as muscle spasticity and seizures.
  6. Provides temporarily relief of anxiety and depression.
What should I expect at my appointment?
If you input your information onto the Request Appointment page of this website, our friendly staff will return your call as soon as possible. We guarantee that it will be within one business day.

You may also call (323)848-4650 during business hours to make your appointment.

We will accommodate your request as closely as we can. If we do not have your specific appointment time and date available we will make room for you. We will work with your schedule.

We provide you with an intake form and our privacy policy. You will likely spend less than a minute filling out our simple intake form and provide us with valid California ID. We will never ask for your social security number.

Your evaluation is done by one of our board-certified and California licensed physicians. Our physicians are very pleasant and helpful. Patients that qualify receive a physician's recommendation for Medical Marijuana. It is a very simple, organized and low-stress process. All of your questions are answered while you are in the clinic and we take as much time as you need to make sure you understand everything. We make every attempt to answer all of your questions and address all of your concerns.
What do I bring to my appointment?
Medical Records
Both new and renewing patients are asked to bring in medical records and whatever documentation you may have from your primary health care provider describing your diagnosis or condition.

Medical records include your doctor’s notes or summaries, prescriptions, emergency room records, MRI/CT or x-ray results. Whatever information you may have regarding your condition.

If you have not seen a doctor or health care provider for long while and have no documentation, we will still evaluate you for a recommendation. We may give you a temporary recommendation and refer you to an outside primary care physician for evaluation. You would then be given a 3-month follow-up appointment with us where we will extend your recommendation at no extra cost.

If you cannot afford to visit a primary physician you may consider one of the free clinics in the surrounding Hollywood area.

We recommend that you begin by trying

We simply want to make sure that you have prior and ongoing medical care for your condition. We are consultants and do not diagnose, treat or follow you for your illness. We will follow up and document how, specifically, Medical Marijuana has affected your condition.
Valid California Identification Card
You must possess a valid California Driver’s License or California issued photo ID card. We do not accept School ID’s, Military ID’s, or out of state driver’s licenses. If you have applied for a license or ID but have not yet received it, please bring a government issued photo ID card along with the DMV temporary print-out.
Is my medical information kept private?
We are in full compliance with HIPPA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) federal regulation. These are the federal doctor-patient confidentiality laws. All your medical information is kept private and secure. No one has access to your medical information unless you authorize it and information will not be shared with anyone at anytime without your written request. Your name is not put on any lists anywhere, nor will we speak to any of your current physicians or family members about your recommendation unless you request it. Every staff member is required to attend HIPPA/privacy training upon being hired and each patient is provided with a copy of our privacy policy upon arriving at our clinic.
If I get a Medical Marijuana recommendation will my name be on a state or government list?
No.  We keep a copy in your private records and you receive an original letter of recommendation.  Your records will always be kept safe and confidential with us.  Your records can only be released with your written consent.  We do not report patients to any state or federal agencies.
What will I receive if I am given a recommendation?
If you are evaluated and found to qualify for medical cannabis then you will receive the following:
  • One (1) original copy of your Medical Cannabis Referral with original physician’s signature and clinic seal.
  • A business-card sized Berkeley Clinic identification card. This card identifies you as a Berkeley Clinic Medical Cannabis patient. It also has our clinic emergency number should you need one of our physicians to immediately verify your status as a medical cannabis patient. It does not take the place of the original medical cannabis referral which must also be kept with you.
  • Information for your records regarding your specific condition and how medical cannabis has been shown to alleviate the symptoms.
  • The "do's and don'ts" of medical cannabis. This document briefly describes what you legally can and cannot do as a medical cannabis patient.
  • Free 3-month follow-up appointment for re-evaluation and to answer any new questions that you may have at that time.
  • E-mail access to our physician and staff after your appointment with any questions. We make every attempt to answer all or your questions during your appointment but if one should arise after you leave we encourage you to e-mail us. You will receive a response within one business day.
How long is a physician’s Medical Marijuana recommendation good for?
Our recommendations are valid for 12 months. This is the maximum time allowed by state law.
Once I receive my recommendation from The Berkeley Clinic then what do I do with it?
You need to keep the original copies of your physician recommendation in a safe place. You need one to prove your legal status in any encounter with law enforcement. You also need one to obtain membership at one of California’s many medical cannabis dispensaries. You should always carry a photocopy of your recommendation or patient verification card whenever you carry your medicine in case you should need it.
We supply you with three original recommendations. You may want to keep one in your car, keep one at home and carry one with you.
Once I am a legal patient, where and how will I get my Medical Marijuana?
Unfortunately, by law, we cannot give out nor discuss any information regarding the purchasing of marijuana or marijuana-containing products.
Can The Berkeley Clinic provide Medicinal Marijuana for its patients?
No. Physicians may legally recommend Medicinal Marijuana for qualified patients, but they may not prescribe nor provide it.
Do you accept insurance?
No. We do not take insurance at this time. Payments are by cash or credit/debit card only.
What if I have never seen a physician about my condition?
If you have not been evaluated by a primary physician for the medical reason that you are requesting evaluation then we will require that you see your primary care provider. However, because so many patients are already self-medicating with cannabis we may issue you a temporary recommendation so that you can have safe and uninterrupted access to medicine until you are evaluated by your primary care provider. Once you receive a diagnosis and/or a proper work-up is underway we will review your medical records and extend your recommendation for no additional fee. We are only concerned that you are receiving proper care, work-up, and follow-up and for the condition that is being treated symptomatically with Medical Marijuana.

As an example, if you are losing your appetite or are always nauseated and marijuana helps you with this then it is wonderful that you have discovered this medication. The question that be must be answered is “why are you having continued nausea and weight loss?” The answer may range from lactose intolerance to cancer. We are medical cannabis consultants and it is up to your primary physician to figure out your exact diagnosis and properly manage it.
If I receive a recommendation will I be able to, or have to, return to The Berkeley Clinic?
If you give us your permission, The Berkeley Clinic will contact you prior to the expiration of your recommendation in order to schedule a renewal appointment. We would also like to know how you are doing with your medicine and if you are having any issues that we may help you with. For this reason we offer a free 3-month follow up appointment.
Is The Berkeley Clinic wheelchair accessible?
Our office and parking lot are both completely wheelchair accessible.
At what age can I get an evaluation at Medical Cannabis of Southern California?
You must be 18-years of age or older.
Can I qualify for Medical Marijuana if I am on parole or probation?
No. We do not issue recommendations if you are on parole or probation.
What happens if The Berkeley Clinic physician feels I do not qualify for Medical Marijuana?
If we feel that you do not qualify for a medical cannabis recommendation you will be refunded 50% of your evaluation fee.
How is my recommendation verified by dispensaries or law enforcement?
We provide online verification 24-hours a day, seven days a week. This means that you will never be turned away by a dispensary because they cannot reach us. We also have a special pager service for our on-call physician in the event that you need to be verified by law enforcement at any time of night or weekend.
Can I grow my own marijuana if I have a physician's recommendation?
Yes. California Law states that you may maintain up to six mature or 12 immature marijuana plants. Counties and cities may set guidelines exceeding, but not reducing, the state limits.
If I have a physician's recommendation, can I sell or distribute marijuana?
No. You may be arrested and prosecuted by state officers for selling and/or distributing marijuana. Your Medical Marijuana is for personal medicinal use only.
If I have a physician’s recommendation, can I share my marijuana with my friends?
No. Your Medical Marijuana is for personal medical use only. It is illegal to share it with your friends.
Is a physician's recommendation legal throughout California?
Yes. It is legal under Proposition 215 and SB420. However different cities and counties have individual guidelines regarding dispensaries and the maximum amount of Medicinal Marijuana patients may possess and cultivate. Medicinal marijuana is not legal under federal law.
Where am I prohibited from using Medicinal Marijuana?
  1. Any place where smoking is prohibited by law.
  2. In or within 1,000 feet of the grounds of a school, recreation center, or youth center, unless the medical use occurs within a private residence.
  3. On a school bus.
  4. While in a motorized vehicle that is being operated.
  5. While operating a boat.
Please use your good judgment and be respectful of those people around you.
What are the primary effects of using medicinal marijuana?
The immediate effect is a dulling of the senses, blunting of memory and concentration and changes in behavior. Pain perception is decreased, nausea is calmed and appetite is stimulated.
What are the side effects of using medicinal marijuana?
The intoxication and effects on the nervous system lead to slowed reaction time and loss of coordination, which last for several hours. These effects make driving a car or any other piece or motorized or heavy machinery hazardous. These activities must be avoided while under the influence of marijuana.

Immediately after inhalation you may feel that your heart begins to beat faster. The affect of the marijuana is that the blood vessels dilate and blood pressure drops which can cause dizziness and the sensation of palpitations . Smoking marijuana is the most common form of ingestion. There are undesirable effects on the lungs as you would get with the inhalation of any burning substance. There are hundreds of chemical compounds in the marijuana plant. The airways of the lungs are lined with millions of microscopic finger-like projections that, working together, move waste and dirt from the lungs upward toward the mouth and nose. The purpose of this mechanism is to move toxins back up and out of the lungs to the mouth and nose, where they can be swallowed, spit or sneezed out. This mechanism is negatively affected with any type of smoking. For this reason we recommend using a vaporizer which is easier on the lungs.

The risks of using marijuana during pregnancy are unknown and we suggest it be avoided.
What are the long term effects of using medicinal marijuana?
There is a mild withdrawal syndrome associated with the cessation of marijuana after as short a time as a week of continued use. The withdrawal syndrome may consist of irritability, insomnia, mood swings, and mild depression. This is uncommon and does not occur in the majority of marijuana users. The body does not become physically dependent to marijuana as it does to alcohol or narcotic pain medications.

We suggest a cessation of marijuana use or ‘drug holiday’ of 1 to 3 weeks every 3 to 4 months. This can help the patient differentiate the side effects of marijuana from the possible symptoms of an illness and help gauge how the symptoms of illness have progressed or declined since marijuana use began.