On August 28, 2018, Public Act 100-1114, the Alternative to Opioids Act of 2018, was signed into law - making changes to the Compassionate Use of Medical Cannabis Pilot Program Act. The Public Act created the Opioid Alternative Pilot Program (OAPP), which allows access to medical cannabis for individuals who have or could receive a prescription for opioids as certified by a physician licensed in Illinois.
Data from the Illinois Department of Public Health indicates opioid deaths in Illinois increased 13 percent from 2016 to 2017. Opioids can be highly addictive in a very short period of time. This program offers qualifying individuals an alternative to manage their pain. The long-term goal of this program is to reduce opioid deaths.
On January 31, 2019, IDPH officially launched the OAPP.
Monthly Opioid Alternative Pilot Program data can be found on the statewide Medical Cannabis Pilot Program website.
Qualifying patients for OAPP must be at least 21 years old and be a resident of Illinois.
Licensed physicians must certify the qualifying patients has a medical condition for which an opioid has been or could be prescribed based on generally accepted standards of care.
Registered patients are eligible to purchase 2.5 ounces of medical cannabis every 14 days.
Physician certifications are valid for 90 days but can be renewed to allow patients to continue accessing medical cannabis.
A $10 fee is required for each 90-day registration period.
Veterans with a current prescription for an opioid who are receiving medical services at VA facilities shall be eligible to register for the OAPP effective September 30, 2019.
Need help with opioid use?
Illinois Helpline for Opioids and Other Substances