The State of Pennsylvania is the next state to pass its own form of legislation regulating the use of medically prescribed cannabis for patients in the state. Patients are already getting their prescriptions now, according to reports on the matter.
Pennsylvania was unsure if a medical marijuana program would work in its state because it was unclear if physicians would sign on to provide the service, according to reports. It is now clear that the summer season is over. There are more than 100 doctors in the state of Pennsylvania willing to prescribe the substance to its patients. Now that this unknown variable has had a shroud of uncertainty lifted, the state can start to begin regulating the natural plant form drug. The concern was that too few patients would make the drug expensive in the local state cannabis industry, but those concerns have been quelled a bit.
A list of 109 approved practitioners statewide was released. Additionally, 200 other doctors across the state have also registered and beginning their required four hours of training as per state guidelines. However, this many doctors is a tiny number of physicians when you consider there are almost 40,000 active doctors in Pennsylvania according to reported data from the Association of American Medical Colleges.
Legal cannabis came to the nearby state of New Jersey seven years ago, in 2010. According to news reports from outlets like Bloomberg, New Jersey’s participation in the program was fewer than two percent of licensed physicians. That number was about one percent in New York, a state that also has a medical marijuana program in place. However, more and more states are passing medical cannabis laws, forcing a debate about whether the federal government can maintain its position with marijuana being classified next to harder street drugs like cocaine and heroin, particularly at a time when there is a public health crisis involving legal opioids, which are a synthetic form of drugs like heroin, opium and morphine. Some of the synthetic versions, are in fact more potent and deadly.
According to a local media report in Pennsylvania, Luke Shultz, a Bernville man, was among the first people in the state to use the medical cannabis provider registry to get hold of a prescription of marijuana for himself.
Shultz has been waiting ten years for the drug to become legally available, according to the report. He wants to use it to treat his chronic back pain. Officials said Pennsylvania patients could be fully able to get prescriptions by May 1, according to reports. This comes two years after the then-governor signed the state program into law. More than 300 physicians have registered with the state’s health department to participate, reports indicated. The remaining doctors need to complete the training.