New Jersey now officially has 1,000 registered medical marijuana patients, but that doesn’t mean they are accessing their medicine. Reportedly only 130 patients have actually been able to purchase medical marijuana due to delays in the system and a shortage of dispensaries.
Medical marijuana was legalized almost four years ago in New Jersey to aid patients suffering from epilepsy, MS, cancer, AIDS, and Crohn’s, among other illnesses, but many patients feel as though they were given false hope. Only one collective has opened so far in the state, and it cannot keep up with the demands of all of the patients.
One patient has sued the state for delays, claiming they are causing him to suffer due to their strict regulations that have caused the majority of prospective dispensaries to remain closed. The only collective that has opened, Greenleaf Compassion Center, has limited its service to residents of Northern New Jersey patients and is still having trouble keeping up with the demand.
New Jersey’s medical marijuana regulations are some of the strictest in the country. Five collectives are currently “in various stages of finalizing locations or background examinations of the principals of their organizations” but in the meantime, hundreds of registered medical marijuana patients are left with nothing more than a piece of paper promising them that one day they may be able to access the medicine they so desperately want and need.