NJ OK’s 26 physicians in Bergen to dispense medical marijuana

CLIFFVIEW PILOT HAS THE LIST: State officials today issued a list of more than 100 physicians now authorized to prescribe medical marijuana, 26 of them from Bergen County. Greenleaf Compassion Center in Montclair also became the state’s first private facility approved to immediately start growing an initial crop of medicinal cannabis.

Photo Credit: Cliffview Pilot
Photo Credit: Cliffview Pilot

A patient registry is nearly complete. Once it officially opens later this month, physicians will enter information about the patient, creating a unique identification number that each can use to register.

The patients will also need to mail a photo to the department before they can be issued an ID card.

“Physicians must have a bona fide and ongoing relationship with qualified patients they are recommending for the program,” Health and Human Services Commissioner Mary O’Dowd warned.

Greenleaf’s dispensary, at 395 Bloomfield Ave., ironically was once a head shop. It will be under strict monitor by the state and must meet “all of the regulations of the Medicinal Marijuana Program,” O’Dowd said.

“The Department is committed to ensuring that medicinal marijuana is safely and securely available to patients as quickly as possible,” she added.

Greenleaf, the first of six state alternative treatment centers to get the preliminary go-ahead, still awaits a final permit.

“Today’s action authorizes Greenleaf to grow medicinal marijuana — which generally takes 3-4 months — so that once a permit for its dispensary is issued, medicinal marijuana will be available without delay,” O’Dowd said.

It’s already been some time coming.

Outgoing Gov. Jon Corzine signed New Jersey’s Compassionate Use Medical Marijuana Act into law on his last day in office more than two years ago.

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