Illinois medical marijuana applicants trending female, older

CHICAGO (AP) — The typical patient seeking to use medical marijuana in Illinois is an older woman in Cook County with either severe fibromyalgia or cancer.

That’s the picture revealed Thursday in a new report to the Legislature from the Illinois Department of Public Health.

The report shows more than one-third of 3,300 completed applications submitted through June 30 came from patients in Cook County. Counties with the next highest number of applicants — Will, DuPage, Lake and Kane — also are in northern Illinois.

Sixty percent of applicants were female. More than half were older than 51. Severe fibromyalgia and cancer led the list of qualifying conditions.

Nearly 1,200 physicians submitted patient certifications, including one doctor who wrote certifications for 998 patients. Ninety-nine percent of the doctors certified fewer than 24 patients.