Arizona’s First Medical Marijuana Dispensary Opens

Over two years after Arizona voters authorized the use of medical marijuana, the first dispensary in the Grand Canyon State has finally opened in Tuscon. Southern Arizona Integrated Therapies opened this weekend to pre-register patients and caregivers, and will begin dispensing medical cannabis on December 11.

The road to opening the first dispensary in Arizona was a long one, facing strong opposition from the governor, local prosecutors, and police, but the final hurdle was cleared last week when inspectors from the state Department of Health gave the green light to open for business.

“Walking into the dispensary is much like walking into a doctor’s office or a pharmacy, with privacy and security being our highest priority,” said Dr. Steven Shochat, the dispensary’s director.

Medical marijuana products will be laboratory tested for patient safety, and the office employs armed security guards for patient protection. Patients must have an appointment to enter the dispensary.

Southern Arizona Integrated Therapies is proceeding with the required documentation, inspections and approvals to operate its own cannabis cultivation center, which is anticipated to be operational within the next few months. Until that time, they are allowed under state law to accept donations of excess medical marijuana from registered caregivers and patients that are authorized to cultivate cannabis.

– Read the entire article at The Daily Chronic.