Patients registered with Minnesota's medical cannabis program will soon be eligible to buy gummy and chewable forms of the substance from state dispensaries.

State Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm said Tuesday in a statement that the edibles were added as the program "continues to respond to the needs of patients."

She said "gummies and chews may be useful options for those who may have difficulty swallowing pills or tablets, do not want to smoke medical cannabis or don't like the taste of other forms of medicine."

Available Aug. 1, the gummies and chews will be regulated separately from the recently authorized hemp-derived edible cannabinoid products regulated by the state Board of Pharmacy.

The newest options for medical cannabis patients were approved in 2021 during the Health Department's annual petition and comment process to solicit public input on potential qualifying medical conditions and delivery methods for medicine through the program.

Under the program's guidelines, consultations are required when patients change the type of medical cannabis they receive. Both Minnesota medical cannabis manufacturers — Green Goods and RISE — are scheduling consultations.

To enroll in the program, a person must be certified by a participating health care practitioner for at least one of 17 qualifying health conditions.

More information on the enrollment process is available on the Office of Medical Cannabis website. Enrollment has steadily increased since the program was launched in 2015, according to the Minnesota Medical Cannabis Dashboard.

In March, smokable dried flower was added as an option for patients age 21 or older.