The U.S. Navy and Alaska are among a group of states that are the first in the nation to offer the opportunity for people who need medical marijuana to get one.
“The new program is not designed to give a blanket license to anyone,” Navy spokeswoman Christine Cimino said in an email to The Associated Press.
“It is to allow patients who qualify to apply for a card, and if they meet the requirements of the program, they can obtain a card.”
Cimino did not say how many people had been approved for the program.
The Alaska Legislature passed a bill that makes it legal to possess and use marijuana and marijuana products.
The bill was passed in the wake of a 2013 U.K. decision that decriminalized possession of small amounts of marijuana and allowed the use of cannabis oil in cases of severe pain or a seizure.
Under the bill, anyone who has a medical condition and needs to receive medical marijuana from an Alaska physician, such as cancer patients, will need to show proof that their condition is “suffering from a debilitating or debilitating medical condition.”
Ciminos said the program was designed to allow people to obtain marijuana legally.
She said that is a “very significant milestone for Alaska,” but stressed that it is not the same as legal access to medical marijuana.
“This is a very complicated legal issue,” Ciminos wrote.
“As Alaska moves forward in implementing the program we will be monitoring this process closely.”
State Health Commissioner David Skalijs said in a statement that the department has been working closely with the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services to craft a plan that would provide adequate safeguards for patients and the system.
The Alaska Department for Health and Human Services said the new program does not mean people with serious medical conditions would be denied access to marijuana.
It also said it will provide training and support to providers who apply for the card, including marijuana-related products, so that they can prepare to apply.
In addition, it said, the department will provide the necessary paperwork for applicants to meet requirements to obtain a medical card, such a medical-marijuana license.
Alaska has about 500,000 people living with chronic pain and other conditions that can’t be managed with medication, according to the Alaska Division of Public Health.
The program, the Alaska Medical Cannabis Program, allows those with a qualifying medical condition to obtain medical marijuana in a form approved by the department.