It’s been finally launched, but Maryland’s medicinal marijuana program is already experiencing medicine supply issues.
At the start of this month, licensed companies began sending medical cannabis to Maryland dispensaries to sell to registered patients. Two dispensaries are now open for business according to the Baltimore Sun, out of ten that have licences. A further 91 are awaiting final approval.
As was the case in Hawaii, it appears demand is outstripping supply. Earlier this week, one of the dispensaries, Potomac Holistics, was pretty much out of products; with supplies snapped up within the first two days of opening its doors.
“For the next few months, dispensaries will be building up their inventories of medical cannabis products,” said the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission (MMCC), which stated patients should expect relatively low inventories for the time being.
The road to this point in Maryland has been a long one.
The state’s medical cannabis program was signed into law in 2014. Part of the delay was due to the licensing for cultivation and processing. While Government officials expected a few hundred applications , it wound up with more than 1,100. Each application had to be processed and then 15 growers and 15 processors selected.
The delay also gave rise to medical marijuana scams, including bogus pre-approval for the program and fake marijuana cards.
While there will be a large number of dispensaries eventually operating in Maryland, there should be no shortage of customers due to the program’s qualifying conditions. Any severe condition that has not responded to other medical treatments and if it can be reasonably expected medical cannabis can be of benefit in treating or managing is eligible.
In other recent news from the program, the Commission announced last week that Joy A. Strand has joined the body as its executive director.
“With her successive roles in healthcare leadership, she has extensive experience helping to identify the pieces and professionals needed to strengthen patient-focused systems, in addition to working well with the business community,” said Brian P. Lopez, chairman of the Commission.
More on Maryland’s medical cannabis program can be viewed here.