Licensed Ohio medical marijuana dispensary owners would have to pay a $5,000 application fee and an $80,000 license fee every other year. Pictured: Marijuana matures at the Medicine Man dispensary and grow operation in northeast Denver on December 5, 2013. (Ed Andrieski, The Associated Press)

Thanks to new proposed rules, 40 shops could dispense Ohio medical marijuana

COLUMBUS, Ohio — As many as 40 shops could dispense medical marijuana in the state under rules proposed by Ohio’s pharmacy board.

Proposals released Thursday by the Ohio Board of Pharmacy also say more dispensaries could be licensed, “based upon the state population, patient population and geographic distribution of dispensary sites to ensure patient access,” The Columbus Dispatch reported.

Licensed dispensary owners would have to pay a $5,000 application fee and an $80,000 license fee every other year. Applicants also would need to prove they have liquid assets totaling at least $250,000, reported.

The proposals require that dispensaries hire a pharmacist, nurse, physician or physician’s assistant to be on-call or on the premises during operating hours. That person must also train workers and create educational information for patients under the rules.

Additionally, dispensaries would be required to report all medical marijuana sales to the state’s controlled substances database.

The State Medical Board also released proposed rules Thursday. They require doctors recommending marijuana to patients to have an active, unrestricted license to practice medicine and surgery or osteopathic medicine and surgery. Those doctors would also have to take two hours of continuing education classes on medical marijuana.

Under the state’s medical marijuana law, patients can only buy and use marijuana if they’ve been diagnosed with one of the diseases or medical conditions listed in the law. Those patients must also obtain a doctor’s recommendation. Smoking and growing marijuana at home are prohibited.

The Ohio Medical Marijuana Advisory Committee, which was created by the medical marijuana law that took effect in September, must approve the rules.

Public comment is being collected until Jan. 13, 2017.

The state Common Sense Initiative, operated out of the lieutenant governor’s office, and a panel of state lawmakers must review the rules.


Online: Ohio medical marijuana