We had the second of four public hearings on the draft rules in Tempe on Tuesday afternoon. We got a lot of good input from folks and there were some good suggestions to improve the draft rule. The most valuable comments came from people that offered concrete ideas for ways we can improve the rule’s effectiveness.
There are two more sessions for the public to comment on the draft rules – one in Tucson this afternoon and another in Tempe on Thursday morning. We’ll be taking public comments online through Friday afternoon. Remember, we want to hear about the things people like as well as those they don’t like. And if they don’t like something, we want to hear their ideas on a better way to do it. The more homework you do the better- and don’t forget to get your electronic comments in by the end of the day this Friday. Thanks.
I believe that if someone can show that they are receiving a medical prescription from a pain management physician for pain relief, like morphine, Oxycontin or other heavy pain meds, they should not have to have another physician involved. I don’t go to my pain doctor for regular visits because he has already told me that there is nothing else to do about my back pain. Having to go to visit at a cost of $75, four times a year is an additional expense I could use to purchase the medical marijuana.
I live in Globe and couldn’t attend the meetings, however I do want my concern addressed. As with other drugs, and alcohol, there are laws to hopefully prevent drunk driving, under the influence, etc. My concern with medical marijuana is those under the influence of this drug operating busses, planes, trains, cabs, doctors operating, those who deliver anesthetics and anyone else who will hold my life and limb in their hands. Marijuana stays in the system quite a while, and I sure don’t want anyone under this influence to have any part in my life. The whole marijuana law is nothing but a joke to promote legal highs. My doctor gives me injections of lidacaine to relieve my pain, and it’s covered by insurance. Marijuana does not relieve pain. Period. There must be laws to prevent anyone who is in so much pain they must depend on a drug, from having jobs that could bring harm to the public. They need to go on disability if they’re in that much pain. Their rights stop where mine start.
this is what i planned to say today but unfortunately the line was too long and i had to get back to work…
Good morning. My name is *********. I stand before you today as a person who has suffered with Crohn’s Disease for the past 22 years, and as a disenchanted former prospective dispensary owner.
DHS’s over-reaching and arbitrary attempt to regulate and stifle the medical cannabis industry in Arizona is appalling, and is doing nothing but harming the people this law was passed to help- the patients.
DHS and its director Will Humble have not proved to be fair nor impartial arbiters during this implementation. The department’s role is to educate the public and to implement this program fairly, safely, and for the utmost benefit of the patients in need. DHS has been severely lacking in its duties.
Through both statements in the media and postings on his blog, Mr. Humble continues to perpetuate the negative image of medicinal cannabis and shows the true biased feelings of the dept. and its director. Posting topics such as “Marijuana Use and Earlier Onset of Psychosis” without posting topics that show medicinal cannabis in a positive light is not fair, nor do I believe in the best interest of the public or the department’s stated mission.
You should be ashamed of yourself Mr. Humble.
As a patient I find the department’s attempt to regulate the doctor/patient relationship absurd, probably illegal and definitely dangerous.
Dealing with a lifelong chronic medical condition often requires a team of doctors- a primary care physician to handle normal day to day medical issues, a specialist to manage the chronic condition, maybe a pain specialist- you get the picture…
I wouldn’t trust my primary care physician, pain specialist nor any doctor other than my gastroenterologist to manage my Crohn’s Disease yet through your regulations you are attempting to force me to see a specific, unqualified doctor to oversee my care? You are setting a dangerous precedent. There is no way a doctor recommending medical cannabis is going to “assume responsibility for providing management and routine care of a qualifying debilitating medical condition” nor should they be forced to. This regulation needs to be removed immediately.
If you want to regulate anything make sure that the quality and purity of the medicinal cannabis in the system is of the highest degree. Ensure patients have consistent, safe access to their medication and stop regulating this industry to the lowest common denominator. There will always be people who attempt to abuse the system. Stop concentrating on them and focus your efforts on compassionately addressing the patients’ needs. Everything else will fall into place.
You guys have stirred up a hornet’s nest of anger and determination within me and many others through your lack of attention to the patients and your overwhelming desire to stifle the industry, keep the little guy out of the picture and satisfy the big money interests who wrote the law. In the coming weeks, months and years, I’m going to do everything within my power to ensure this program is patient-centric— that patients are the #1 focus and priority, and that our access to pure, clean, well grown, medically diverse and abundant cannabis is assured in AZ. Thank you.
Thank you so much for your input, it is much appreciated. We are doing our best with the rules, and understand that there will be people on both sides of the spectrum (happy/un-happy) with the final rules.
I, and most all others agree 100%, Mr. Humble.
Mr. Humble, you said in an interview that you expect to have only 10,000 to 20,000 medical marijuana cardholders under this program. Is that correct?
That is our original guesstimate, but it all depends on whether or not physicians act responsibly and write reccomendations for true and dibilitating conditions.
But there will be regulations in place to make sure physicians act responsibly, right? That’s what you said in your interview. There will be rules that prevent physicians from writing more than a certain number of prescriptions, right?
In States with mandatory registries it is shown that 1-2% of the population is eligible for medical cannabis. If that holds true for Arizona there would be about 100,000 patients in the state….
I agree with Jeffrey, too many visits for a medical marijuana evaluation can be costly when they are not absolutely necessary anyway.
Thank you all for working so dilligently at working out the regulkations. I feel as though the lottery system is a poor method to choose who gets permitted. It does not ensure that the most qualified aplicants are chosen. It also allows goups with more start up capital to apply for more permits giving them an unfair advantage. If there are five teachers applying for the same position, or five nurses, they are not chosen randomly. The most qualified applicant is chosen. I feel permits should given to the most qualified applicants, not randomly.
Again I say thank you.
For the vague location guidelines that are being developed by individual cities for zoning of dispensary and cultivation locations an inherent problem arrises. Are you going to be required to maintain the cultivation and dispensary within the same city as the approved zoning when applying for the dispensary application process, or , can you have a cultivation location found within another city using their “approved” guidelines for cultivation locations?
As another patient who has multiple medical concerns, I, too, am concerned about being “forced” to turn over my complex care to a physician I do not know and is not qualified to manage my care. One of my conditions is glaucoma, another macular degeneration and another hepatitis c. I would not want my gastroenterologist managing my glaucoma, yet I could really benefit from the effects of marijuana.
Will & Staff—I think you are way underestimating how many people out there are suffering. It is estimated that 306,000 people across the country have spinal cord injuries…and that is only one area…..add MS, diseases, etc., etc., etc…. a lot of people are truly in pain and medical marijuana offers them a way to allevaite their pain and suffering. Please don’t make judgments without all the facts.
Will the state be liable for the harm done by this drug?
I am very concerned about abuse with in the system. Physicians don’t have time to police patients.
2 out of the 3 people that I know who are planning on applying for a dispensary permit are chronic users. How often will the dispensary workers and owners be tested?
1. Make medical marijuana affordable for poor patients. 2. A simple doctor recommendation with one visit is all that is required if the patient has a medical condition and is already being prescribed pain killers.
3. This is a natural plant being grown and unless the grower is using dangerous chemicals to grow it, the marijuana is fine.
4. A dispensary doesn’t need a doctor, a security system, or other outrageous unnecessary requirements to drive up the price of the marijuana. Let a state health inspector come by once a year like with food. If you need, have a police detective visit the facility once a year.
5. Any one should be able to start a dispensary with a minimum amount of money, as long as they pay their taxes. We don’t want this to be a walmart type business. Give the small mom and pops a chance to start a dispensary.
6. Fees for the dispensary and the patient need to be low. Most patients are poor. If they have any income at all it is probably $700 a month social security disability, which they must use for housing, utilities, etc., not leaving much for anything else. The costs will already be high, not to mention the state is thinking of taxing it at 300%. Medical marijuana should be available for poor, sick patients, not just the rich. Dispensary owners should be able to start a dispensary with a small amount of money. After all it’s just a weed in the ground. This isn’t rocket science.
7. Cha’s are a dumb idea. Give everyone a chance.
8. Bottomline make medical marijuana affordable for poor patients.
You need to think about the patients and the best way to provide for them. You are coming up with ridiculous rules.
-Patients need to be 25 miles from a dispensary to grow. (Patients should be able to grow right next to a dispensary.)
-500 ft from a school.(Why does this even matter your still right next to the school.)
-The wait time for the application process is way to long for 20,000. ( If you expect 150,000 then your time frame would be right on.)
-Patients, Dispensary’s, Caregivers need to be residents for one year.( Why does this even matter, people move all the time for a new start. A more appropriate time frame is 90 days.)
-Dispensary’s might be required to grow 70% of its medical marijuana. The dispensary also can’t buy from a caregiver,but can accept medical marijuana gift’s for free??? ( The caregivers should be able to sell extra medical marijuana, edibles or oils for a profit. Why are the dispensary’s the only ones able to turn a profit.)
Arizona has the best jail system, strictest sheriff and some of the brightest people I have ever ment. Reward people for green ideas like using solar power, putting money back into the community and making Arizona a better place. Nothing is going to get out of hand, I know you guys are going to keep a tight grip on this, I expect the best from Arizona.
Relax a little and help the ill patients live a better life. Make sure you get all the rules right the first time. If you don’t get the rules right, people are going to keep fighting the rules they don’t like, you may have not wanted this to pass, but it did. So make the best of it and make sure it puts a lot of money back into Arizona.
The majority of the concerns that you’ve expressed were in the initiative passed by the voters- not in our Rule. We can’t change things that are expressly stated in the Initiative. For example, the Initiative states that one can’t grow if you live less than 25 mi from the nearest dispensary. It also says you can’t site a dispensary less than 500 ft from a school. We are no longer proposing to require dispensaries to grow 70% of their inventory.
We’re doing our best to put together a responsible package for release at the end of March that will provide easy access for qualified patients while preventing this program from becoming recreational. If we can keep the program medical rather than recreational we will reduce the chances that the program could ultimately be repealed by Referendum.
Will—like you said to Shayla…follow the initiative as passed by the voters.
Anyone can get marijuana on the streets easily. So whatever you do won’t affect the recreational smoker. If some recreational smokers get some, go after the doctor. But it is better to err towards allowing more patients than be restrictive denying sick patients.
Be kind to sick patients.
Thank you for your prompt response.
I have read through the draft rules, but do not see anything concerning the regulations/ rules that analytical testing laboratories will need to fulfill. Many individuals have been calling for assurance that the product patients will be receiving will be safe and free of harmful pesticides, but without analytical verification, dispensaries cannot address this concern for their patients. I hope to provide this service for dispensaries in Arizona, but have no guidelines to follow to get set up. Please help.
Please read R9-17-316, it may provide some guidance. Ingrediants must be disclosed on label.
R9-17-203.H. For purposes of this Article, “25 miles” includes the area contained within a circle that extends for 25 miles in all directions from a specific location.
DHS has taken the authority to define “25 Miles” Please use that same authority to remove that rule. Thank you
The creators of the initiative added the 25 mile rule for the purpose of profit for the dispensaries. “to give a market to the dispensaries in the community so they’d be viable” Said by (name removed by editor) the spokesman for MMP the crafters of prop 203
Prescription drugs and alcohol are way worse than medical marijuana. Someone may die from their illness. Someone may die from drug overdose or drug interactions. But I don’t know anyone who has died from taking medical marijuna. Lighten up Will Humble and staff. Let the sick and dying have a safer option than prescription meds. Make it affordable and easy to obtain for those in need.
This is a never ending discussion topic. Here in Colorado this establishment are spreading everywhere. It is a very lucrative business. We’ll see where we go with all this and if ever becomes completely legal for general public.
no reason it shouldn’t be legalized and taxed! Would create jobs and help millions!
So many other kinds of prescription drugs do just as much, if not way more damage, than Marijuana. I agree with Joe M on this, it’s a never ending debate.