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New York State Department Of Health Announces Five Medical Marijuana Producers

hash plant cannabisThe New York State Department of Health (DOH) announced the following five companies would be awarded one of the coveted licenses to grow and dispense medical marijuana in New York: PharmaCann LLC, Empire State Health Solutions LLC, Columbia Care NY LLC, Etain, LLC, Bloomfield Industries Inc. The announcement came after a competitive bidding process through which forty-three industry groups contended for the five licenses. Each producer is restricted to opening only four dispensaries each, they will only be allowed to produce five strains or brands of medical marijuana, and all products must be in pill, oil or tincture form. The price of the medicine will be set by the Commissioner of Health.

DOH has said that New York’s medical marijuana program will be fully operational by January 2016. Before the program can become operational, the state must also create a system for registering doctors and patients. Since July 2014, advocates have been fighting for an emergency access program to get medicine to the critically ill sooner than the January 2016 deadline. But despite a year of advocacy and passing an emergency access bill in both the Senate and Assembly, to date, not one patient in New York has received medical marijuana.

DOH has said that New York’s medical marijuana program will be fully operational by January 2016. Before the program can become operational, the state must also create a system for registering doctors and patients. Since July 2014, advocates have been fighting for an emergency access program to get medicine to the critically ill sooner than the January 2016 deadline. But despite a year of advocacy and passing an emergency access bill in both the Senate and Assembly, to date, not one patient in New York has received medical marijuana.

Statement from Julie Netherland, PhD, who is a deputy state director at the Drug Policy Alliance and helps staff Compassionate Care NY, a grassroots coalition representing thousands of patients, families, and providers and dozens of organizations:

“The announcement of the five producers is an important milestone in the implementation of New York’s medical marijuana program, but the state still has a long way to go before medicine gets to the patients who so desperately need it, and our concerns with the program’s limitations still stand. We hope that the selected companies have the experience, integrity, and focus on patient welfare that New Yorkers deserve. In the coming weeks, we will be taking a closer look at the companies to learn what we can about them. And over the long term, we’ll be working to insure they are held to the highest standards of corporate integrity and patient care.

“The distribution of dispensaries around the state remains a major concern. Given the current proposed sites, there are huge areas of the state where patients will have to travel enormous distances to get medicine. This is especially problematic given that many medical marijuana patients are sick and disabled and low income.

“We are looking forward to working with the selected producers to address some of the most serious issues with New York’s medical marijuana program, such as access for low income patients, geographical access across the state, access to whole plant medicine, the number of covered conditions, and creating a diverse and equitable industry.”

Source: Drug Policy Alliancemake a donation

  • Jordan Shorette

    hey everybody air is legal but its up to the nys government how you use it! don’t get me wrong its amazing that all of the suffering new Yorkers have at least some options now ( if you live in NYC, Albany, or Buffalo ) but the aggressively heavy restrictions are a slap in the face to common sense and this MMJ law is the tiniest fraction of what the people of New York wanted, its what one person Cuomo wanted because he obviously knows whats best for an entire state that hates him!

  • I’m happy to see at least some progress… Although it’s an extreme display of over-regulation as Jordan pointed out, It’s better than nothing. When the money flows, they’ll loosen their grips I’m sure.

    Cory S.
    http://www.juicyrips.com

    • Jordan Shorette

      lets hope the money flows with the amount of producers set at 5 and the massive state population its like showing up to give a 1000 dying people in the dessert one glass of water to share

  • Johnny oneye

    “But despite a year of advocacy and passing an emergency access bill in both the Senate and Assembly, to date, not one patient in New York has received medical marijuana “

  • Ryan744

    Does anyone know what happened to that emergency access program? I thought there was a deadline for Cuomo to sign or veto the bill that was passed over a month ago. Did he “pocket veto” the bill by not doing anything?

    • Lawrence Goodwin

      Gov. Andrew Cuomo did not sign the emergency-access legislation. His staffers were quoted in the media in opposition, citing the potential for complications relating to implementation of the 2014 Compassionate Care Act (CCA). One of that law’s chief sponsors, Sen. Diane Savino, was also opposed. Savino said it would be virtually impossible to provide “emergency access” to patients any faster than the CCA already allows by January. There is talk that top Cuomo officials are doing everything in their power to obtain cannabidiol treatments in New York before January for kids suffering so long from those horrible seizure disorders.

  • AntiIgnorant

    Absolute nonsense. Cannabis is safer than alcohol. Anybody can brew alcohol as a hobby. Anybody should be able to grow their own cannabis.

  • legalize The marijuana Plant.

  • justmyopinion

    I’m from Maine, where I had medical access. I can’t believe there is actual a law this ineffectual getting ready to go into effect.

  • Angie

    Ny medical marihuana program is jock