New Jersey’s Department of Health announced last week it is allowing dispensaries in the state to display pricing of their medical cannabis products online if they so wish.
Health Commissioner Dr. Shereef Elnahal said the change was part of the Department’s ongoing effort to make the state’s program more consumer-friendly.
“Medical marijuana patients should benefit from online price information just as shoppers do when they buy a car, a plane ticket or any other consumer goods,” said Dr. Elnahal.
The reason for the original ban on displaying pricing on web sites is unclear – many other states where medicinal cannabis is legal allow it, and the web is where many patients seek out this sort of information.
“This puts New Jersey’s patients and dispensaries on par with those in nearby states like Pennsylvania and Washington, D.C.,” said Assistant Commissioner Jeff Brown regarding the change.
In other news out of New Jersey, a decision on who will be awarded licenses for six new dispensaries will reportedly be delayed due to an influx of applications.
In September we reported 146 applications were received. It was intended for the review process to be completed in November, but that’s looking unlikely due to the volume of work associated with the review.
New dispensaries are desperately needed as the state’s program now serves more than 33,500 patients, with 16,000 signing up since January. The influx has been due to sweeping reforms, including the addition of new conditions being eligible. According to the Department, a majority of those registering since January have one of the five medical conditions added in late March – anxiety, migraine, Tourette’s syndrome, musculoskeletal disorder related chronic pain, and chronic visceral pain.
Even if the Department had made the review deadline, it would have been some months after before the additional dispensaries were ready to go. However, existing Alternative Treatment Centers (ATCs) – what dispensaries are called in New Jersey – have been permitted to open satellite locations.
Dr. Elnahal has previously commented that this round of new ATC licences won’t be the last – and judging by what’s happening in New Jersey, more will certainly be required.