Medical marijuana patients in New York have been waiting a long time for safe access to medical marijuana. After a very long wait, medical marijuana was legalized in limited forms in New York. But since New York doesn't allow home cultivation, patients had to wait until cultivation and distribution licenses were awarded, which was a drawn out process. Now that licenses have been issued, patients are still without medicine, and while cultivation companies have until January to get their product to patients, many are worried that the deadline will not be met. Per Marijuana Business Daily:
Some stakeholders in New York are already voicing concerns about whether or not medical cannabis will be available for purchase in January, as required by state law.
A mother with a severely epileptic daughter told one NBC affiliate that there's "no way" MMJ will be ready for sale in New York if the medicine has to be grown and manufactured in-state, given that one of the license winners has said that its manufacturing plant won't be up and running until December.
The same mother is also worried that the licensees may not fully understand what type of medicine is really needed by patients, since the state only allows non-smokable MMJ.
She said that the co-founder of a licensed medical cannabis company she spoke to told her that medicine would be in the form of "sprays, sub-linguals (oil drops) and a vaporizer," but that what she needs are concentrated oils or capsules for her seizure-stricken child.
New York's medical marijuana program will always experience issues as long as it doesn't allow home cultivation, prevents many patients from being approved because of the condition they suffer from, and doesn't allow all forms of consumption. This is something that New York politicians need to realize. All the while patients will suffer in New York, as they have been for way too long. For the sake of patients I hope that medicine is ready by January (or preferably sooner), but with the way things have been going in New York, I think everyone is expecting delays. I truly hope that when meds are finally available, that they are in forms that actually help patients, and I also hope that the handful of companies that have licenses don't price gouge patients, which happens way to often these days in the medical marijuana industry.