The first Ohio sales of medical marijuana are being made with the opening of four dispensaries in the state.
Fifty-six-year-old Joan Caleodis was the first customer to buy cannabis Wednesday morning at the CY+ Dispensary in Wintersville near Steubenville in eastern Ohio. Caleodis, of Martin’s Ferry, received a doctor’s recommendation for medical cannabis to treat primary progressive multiple sclerosis and bought $200 worth of flower she plans to use in a vape pen.
Caleodis said in a phone interview the opening of dispensaries is a “big win” for Ohio patients.
Only plant materials are being sold for now. Products like edibles, tinctures and lotions won’t become available until cannabis processing facilities are operational.
People can buy medical marijuana with a physician’s recommendation for one of 21 qualifying medical conditions.
Nine dispensaries have provisional licenses to open in the Dayton region including those in Butler, Clark, Greene, Montgomery and Warren counties, but they have yet to get final approval from the state.
“Patients in Ohio are finally going to begin accessing medical marijuana safely and legally in licensed dispensaries. While this is historic, it is also bittersweet, as implementation of the law continues to be delayed in most parts of the state,” said Chris Lindsey, senior legislative counsel for the Marijuana Policy Project. “Countless Ohioans could benefit from medical cannabis, but only a limited number will gain access to it this week.”