Medical marijuana patient registrations continue to surge since Washington, D.C. began allowing residents to self-certify without a doctor's recommendation, with the program adding about 1,500 more patients in September. At the end of last month, D.C. had 22,482 registered marijuana patients, nearly double the number of patients at the same time last year and a 90 percent increase from 2021. The rapid growth in recent months appears to be directly related to the self-certification policy signed into law on July 6. The trend may have expanded significantly since Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser (D) signed another bill last week allowing non-residents to self-certify. Under the emergency legislation, Alcoholic Beverage Regulatory Authority (ABRA) regulators can now offer visitors a temporary 30-day registration to purchase marijuana from dispensaries. More importantly, emergency legislation allowing adult residents 21 and older to self-certify will be permanently codified in a bill that passed the D.C. Judiciary and Public Safety Committee on Friday. The measure also includes provisions to remove existing license caps for cannabis businesses, which could help meet the growing demand from tourists and residents.
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