New York’s medical marijuana program is being developed as we speak – 20 medical marijuana dispensaries are expected to open across New York state as early as next year. It seems as if Brooklyn might become a home to one of those 20 dispensaries as company called PalliaTech announced it has signed a lease on a space in downtown Brooklyn, where it hopes to deliver medical cannabis to patients as a part of states’ highly regulated new program.
A demanding application process
PalliaTech’s executive vice president, Andrei Bogolubov, expressed his feelings for The Huffington Post and said that the application process has been “much more demanding” than in other states where medical marijuana has been legalized. That could be partly due to the fact that New York’s medical marijuana program has some of the strictest rules and regulations in the whole country. Last year, Gov. Cuomo signed the Compassionate Care Act and it’s far from California’s program, where “green cards” may be issued to patients suffering from, well, everything from insomnia to headaches. Instead, patients from New York would be heavily restricted, and medical cannabis will be allowed to “a handful” of them with certain conditions. However, even the patients who qualify may have trouble accessing the dispensaries. One major concern is that smoking of the raw marijuana flower is not allowed. New York’s program also bans marijuana edibles, allowing for only oil “extracts” that may be vaporized, swallowed in a capsule, or absorbed in the mouth. Additionally, advocates are wondering are 20 dispensaries enough to serve the entire state and its population of 20 million?
For patients with serious conditions
In an effort to keep the balance between providing those suffering from serious illnesses with access to their medication and to guard the public safety, the lawmakers of New York have come up with an extensive and strict set of rules for their state’s medical marijuana program. To ensure medical marijuana is available only and exclusively to patients with serious medical conditions who can most benefit from the treatment, the law establishes a certification and registry process for physicians to administer the drug. The conditions for which medical marijuana can be recommended are cancer, HIV/AIDS, ALS (Lou Gehrigs Disease), Parkinson’s Disease, multiple sclerosis, damage to the nervous tissue of the spinal cord with objective neurological indication on intractable spasticity, epilepsy, inflammatory bowel disease, neuropathies, Huntington’s Disease.
Support for the strict program
“We believe that New York has set a national standard,” Mr. Bogolubov added. “It will give doctors a tool so that they can finally unlock the therapeutic potential of cannabis.” The dispensary in Brooklyn would be PalliaTech’s only New York City venture, although the company plans on opening stores in Rochester, Utica, and Newburgh. As medical marijuana dispensaries are applying for vendor licenses from the state, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams has expressed his support for some of the nation’s more controversial industries. “Brooklyn has a welcome mat for all the new, disruptive technologies,” Adams said, “I want Airbnb. I want Bitcoin. I want a marijuana dispensary. Come to Brooklyn.”