2014 New Jersey Revised Statutes
Title 24 - FOOD AND DRUGS
Section 24:6I-4 - Registry of qualifying patients, primary caregivers.

NJ Rev Stat § 24:6I-4 (2014) What's This?

24:6I-4 Registry of qualifying patients, primary caregivers.

4. a. The department shall establish a registry of qualifying patients and their primary caregivers, and shall issue a registry identification card, which shall be valid for two years, to a qualifying patient and primary caregiver, if applicable, who submits the following, in accordance with regulations adopted by the department:

(1)a certification that meets the requirements of section 5 of this act;

(2)an application or renewal fee, which may be based on a sliding scale as determined by the commissioner;

(3)the name, address and date of birth of the patient and caregiver, as applicable; and

(4)the name, address and telephone number of the patient's physician.

b.Before issuing a registry identification card, the department shall verify the information contained in the application or renewal form submitted pursuant to this section. In the case of a primary caregiver, the department shall provisionally approve an application pending the results of a criminal history record background check, if the caregiver otherwise meets the requirements of this act. The department shall approve or deny an application or renewal within 30 days of receipt of the completed application or renewal, and shall issue a registry identification card within five days of approving the application or renewal. The department may deny an application or renewal only if the applicant fails to provide the information required pursuant to this section, or if the department determines that the information was incorrect or falsified or does not meet the requirements of this act. Denial of an application shall be a final agency decision, subject to review by the Superior Court, Appellate Division.

c. (1) The commissioner shall require each applicant seeking to serve as a primary caregiver to undergo a criminal history record background check. The commissioner is authorized to exchange fingerprint data with and receive criminal history record background information from the Division of State Police and the Federal Bureau of Investigation consistent with the provisions of applicable federal and State laws, rules, and regulations. The Division of State Police shall forward criminal history record background information to the commissioner in a timely manner when requested pursuant to the provisions of this section.

An applicant seeking to serve as a primary caregiver shall submit to being fingerprinted in accordance with applicable State and federal laws, rules, and regulations. No check of criminal history record background information shall be performed pursuant to this section unless the applicant has furnished his written consent to that check. An applicant who refuses to consent to, or cooperate in, the securing of a check of criminal history record background information shall not be considered for inclusion in the registry as a primary caregiver or issuance of an identification card. An applicant shall bear the cost for the criminal history record background check, including all costs of administering and processing the check.

(2)The commissioner shall not approve an applicant seeking to serve as a primary caregiver if the criminal history record background information of the applicant reveals a disqualifying conviction. For the purposes of this section, a disqualifying conviction shall mean a conviction of a crime involving any controlled dangerous substance or controlled substance analog as set forth in chapter 35 of Title 2C of the New Jersey Statutes except paragraph (4) of subsection a. of N.J.S.2C:35-10, or any similar law of the United States or of any other state.

(3)Upon receipt of the criminal history record background information from the Division of State Police and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the commissioner shall provide written notification to the applicant of his qualification or disqualification for serving as a primary caregiver.

If the applicant is disqualified because of a disqualifying conviction pursuant to the provisions of this section, the conviction that constitutes the basis for the disqualification shall be identified in the written notice.

(4)The Division of State Police shall promptly notify the commissioner in the event that an individual who was the subject of a criminal history record background check conducted pursuant to this section is convicted of a crime or offense in this State after the date the background check was performed. Upon receipt of that notification, the commissioner shall make a determination regarding the continued eligibility of the applicant to serve as a primary caregiver.

(5)Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection b. of this section to the contrary, no applicant shall be disqualified from serving as a registered primary caregiver on the basis of any conviction disclosed by a criminal history record background check conducted pursuant to this section if the individual has affirmatively demonstrated to the commissioner clear and convincing evidence of rehabilitation. In determining whether clear and convincing evidence of rehabilitation has been demonstrated, the following factors shall be considered:

(a)the nature and responsibility of the position which the convicted individual would hold, has held, or currently holds;

(b)the nature and seriousness of the crime or offense;

(c)the circumstances under which the crime or offense occurred;

(d)the date of the crime or offense;

(e)the age of the individual when the crime or offense was committed;

(f)whether the crime or offense was an isolated or repeated incident;

(g)any social conditions which may have contributed to the commission of the crime or offense; and

(h)any evidence of rehabilitation, including good conduct in prison or in the community, counseling or psychiatric treatment received, acquisition of additional academic or vocational schooling, successful participation in correctional work-release programs, or the recommendation of those who have had the individual under their supervision.

d.A registry identification card shall contain the following information:

(1)the name, address and date of birth of the patient and primary caregiver, if applicable;

(2)the expiration date of the registry identification card;

(3)photo identification of the cardholder; and

(4)such other information that the department may specify by regulation.

e. (1) A patient who has been issued a registry identification card shall notify the department of any change in the patient's name, address, or physician or change in status of the patient's debilitating medical condition, within 10 days of such change, or the registry identification card shall be deemed null and void.

(2)A primary caregiver who has been issued a registry identification card shall notify the department of any change in the caregiver's name or address within 10 days of such change, or the registry identification card shall be deemed null and void.

f.The department shall maintain a confidential list of the persons to whom it has issued registry identification cards. Individual names and other identifying information on the list, and information contained in any application form, or accompanying or supporting document shall be confidential, and shall not be considered a public record under P.L.1963, c.73 (C.47:1A-1 et seq.) or P.L.2001, c.404 (C.47:1A-5 et al.), and shall not be disclosed except to:

(1)authorized employees of the department and the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety as necessary to perform official duties of the department and the division, as applicable; and

(2)authorized employees of State or local law enforcement agencies, only as necessary to verify that a person who is engaged in the suspected or alleged medical use of marijuana is lawfully in possession of a registry identification card.

g.Applying for or receiving a registry card does not constitute a waiver of the qualifying patient's patient-physician privilege.

L.2009, c.307, s.4.


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