(Jan. 26, 2018) Without the crowds or fanfare seen in other states, Positive Energy, the countys first medical marijuana dispensary, opened its doors to the public on Thursday.
Its incredible. Its been just a little over three years in the making and to have the patients come in and being able to interact with them is huge, Lyndsey Odachowski, general manager, said. I had my grandparents come in, and seeing it come full circle for them is really huge.
Odachowski said both her grandmother and grandfather have seen benefits from medical marijuana use.
The dispensary is on Route 50, at the intersection with Jerry Mack Road, in a complex owned by the Odachowski family. The full address is 9939 Jerry Mack Road.
Maryland law allows two dispensaries per state senate district and Odachowskis Positive Energy is the first to open.
Robert Davis, owner and clinical director of Hi-Tide dispensary, also in West Ocean City at 12600 Marjan Lane, said he expects to open in February.
Hi-Tide is still waiting on final approval from the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission to open.
For the community, we can now offer an option for them to get natural medicine in their own backyard, and they dont have to go far, she said.
Because the shore is a popular and growing retirement area, Odachowski said she thought it was important to provide that population with a local solution for symptom relief.
There are a lot of older people who put a lot of miles on their body and they deserve pain relief too, or whatever relief they can get for their condition, she said.
Odachowski announced Positive Energys opening during an information session she hosted last week in Ocean Pines, which drew about 100 people. She said people began arriving about an hour before it was scheduled to start, and had many questions from audience members for certifying physician Dr. William Eddie Gunn.
Many of the questions were specific to certain ailments, and how cannabis might be used to control certain symptoms, she said.
The process for obtaining medical cannabis in Maryland is somewhat inverted from the traditional doctor-patient relationship, where a patient brings a complaint and the doctor prescribes medicine.
In this case, a patient already registered with the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission schedules an appointment for certification from a provider, also registered with the state. Registration is available online via the commissions website. mmcc.maryland.gov.
The patient describes the result they would like to achieve to the provider, and if that matches with one of the states qualifying conditions, a certification is issued. That certification is taken to the dispensary by the patient, who determines, with assistance from the dispensary staff, what product best suits the patients needs.
Because state and federal marijuana laws conflict, payments for medical cannabis have been made mostly on a cash basis. However, Odachowski said she could also accept CanPay, a credit and debit payment app launched in Littleton, Colorado in 2016, specifically to handle medical marijuana payments.
For more information about Positive Energy, visit www.facebook.com/PositiveEnergyOC.