Pennsylvania’s Cannabis Industry is on the Rise
On April 17, 2016, Pennsylvania created its medical marijuana program. Since then, they have done their best to decriminalize the people using marijuana for medical reasons and carrying it around. They have done the same things for people selling, dispensing, and prescribing marijuana. Since then, the state’s medical marijuana industry has seen incredible growth.
Part of that growth has been from the number of dispensaries that have not only been able to open their doors but expand beyond their own original location. The first store to open was a store known as ReStore in Northern Liberties. They opened on May 30, 2018. They now have two additional locations in Elkins Park and Doylestown.
This growth came from their record sales and the additional need to expand before being open a year. A lot of dispensaries are seeing the same kinds of growth. They may have had slow starts because of the numbers of people signing up and waiting for approval, but now business is booming.
Another significant reason for this change was the introduction of more strains or marijuana and flowers or “buds” which has meant that more people are finding the right treatments than there were in the first year of operation.
There are only 21 conditions that are allowed to be treated with marijuana, but more are in the pipeline for possible approval within the year. Some of those reasons include opioid addiction which is still being studied for effectiveness in several states. Medical Marijuana in PA is growing in response to the need to treat more illnesses.
What has also made the Pennsylvania Medical Marijuana program effective is the number of physicians participating in it and learning more about what has been studied in terms of treatment. Many physicians were never introduced to marijuana as a possible way of treating conditions until the laws started to change.
They are reading up on how marijuana is effective at treating a number of illnesses and while there were some physicians that may have been too loose with the medical marijuana cards in the beginning through lack of understanding this has tightened up. People are getting actual treatment and are able to see their doctors about this without needing to pay $200 per visit.
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The doctors themselves are also learning from their patients because of the relationship between the dispensary and the pharmacy means that patient information gets shared back and forth. The patient conditions are being closely monitored and the medications are being adjusted as needed for each patient.
If one strain of marijuana doesn’t work, the doctor is able to check with the patient’s pharmacy to help figure out which one to try next and at what dosage and type. They are working together to help the patient find relief.
The Pennsylvania Registry website has also made great progress to make sure patients do not wait too long for their medical marijuana card. If all the paperwork, physician’s recommendation form, and the application fee is paid for then it usually only takes two weeks for approval to be granted and a license issued. Some applications are being processed faster than others.
Now that the program is over a year only, it can no longer be considered young so the entire process is speeding up. There are fewer new hurdles for patients to jump and the dispensaries are figuring out what they need to open a store and stay active in the business. What is allowable for a store to do and sell is established and how the need to operate to stay compliant with the state laws has been figured out such as it is alright to assist people with purchasing medical marijuana from the store.
It is not alright to conduct yoga or meditation classes in the same building. This is sending mixed messages. This kind of culture is still encouraged as a way to not only enjoy your medication but as a way to find relief in a different way. It will just not be allowed by the state because it makes it more difficult to track how a patient’s medicine is working if other things may be affecting it.
They want to make sure that what patient is receiving from a facility is only what they are being prescribed to have. They can participate in other activities, just not ones connected with the dispensary.
Medical marijuana has turned the state into the direction of self-guided wellness. A patient has more options for treating their medical problems without needing to rely on heavy doses of medications that have any number of side effects. What makes this system function so well is that there is more of a balance and a lot of communication between, patient, doctor, and dispensary. This means all parties are informed and know what is going on. This means the patients are getting closely observed and the medicines adjusted correctly.