Only 71 medical marijuana patients so far in NYS

Only 71 medical marijuana patients so far in NYS
Posted at 4:10 PM, Jan 08, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-08 16:10:52-05

New York's medical marijuana program has signed up 71 patients so far.

The state's Department of Health provided the number on Friday.

The program began Thursday.

To receive marijuana, patients with certain qualifying conditions must get a certification from a physician registered with the state's program. The patient must then apply for a state registry card.

The medication is available only in non-smokable form and can be obtained from a state-regulated dispensary.

Eight of 20 authorized dispensaries opened on Thursday. The others are expected to open by month's end.

Some 174 doctors have registered with the program. State officials say they plan to share the list of participating physicians with health care providers throughout the state so they can refer patients.

More than 20 states now have medical marijuana programs.

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