First Medicinal Marijuana Facility Opens in New York

Only certified patients suffering from specific conditions can be helped at the centers

Well, it seems the battle to offer marijuana legally is slowly but surely showing signs of triumph. New York is opening eight dispensaries statewide, serving a variety of syrups, concentrates, and other forms of the drug for medicinal use, according to reports.

The state joins almost half of the states in the U.S. in allowing the use of medical marijuana Stocks. Only certified patients can partake at the centers.

Officials at the state’s Department of Health told The New York Times that only 51 patients had qualified for the drug thus far. Such certification, however, began Dec. 23 and requires a physician registered with the state to approve.

Facilities opened across the state, including one on East 14th Street in Manhattan, and other locations are opening in Westchester County, Kingston, Albany, the Buffalo area, and in the Finger Lakes regions.

The dispensaries are legal under a 2014 legislation signed by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, after lobbyists battled on for patients, including children, who would benefit from cannabis use to provide relief from debilitating illnesses. However, for those who believe they can just smoke on the street — as is allowed in places like Amsterdam — Cuomo has added the prohibition of that via the approval.

Five companies were chosen by the state in July to offer medicinal marijuana, according to the Wall Street Journal. The companies are only allowed to sell marijuana in the form of capsules, liquids, or oils, but they can not sell it for smoking or edibles.

Dispensing of the marijuana is only for the treatment of specific conditions, which include cancer, HIV/AIDS, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, and inflammatory bowel disease. The state is evaluating adding more conditions that have debilitating symptoms, including Alzheimer’s disease, post-traumatic stress disorder, and rheumatoid arthritis, according to the health department.

There are almost 150 doctors in New York registered for the program, the health department reports.


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Janell Hazelwood

Janell Hazelwood is associate managing editor at Black Enterprise, managing content across core areas of Money, Career, Small Business and Technology. She is also a featured blogger with My Two Cents, providing insights on branding, millennial career development, employment trends and leadership. She was previously a content producer and copy editor for Black Enterprise magazine, working across several editorial sections. The Hampton University graduate got her start in the newspaper industry, having worked for companies including The New York Times and Scripps Howard News Service. Her works and insights have appeared on The Huffington Post, MadameNoire, E!Online, Brazen Careerist, CBS News, and Arise TV.

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