Needham, Newton Could Be Locations of Medical Marijuana 'Consultation Centers'
Newton, Needham and Brighton are all being mentioned as possible locations for evaluation offices if Framingham office is successful.
Places to get a doctor's note to use medical marijuana could be opening soon in Needham and Newton, boston.com reports.
The California-based company CannaMed already has plans to open in January in Framingham, after postponing its opening from December 15.
According to the boston.com story, if the Framingham office is successful, CannaMed says it also wants to expand to open new offices in Needham and Newton.
"A spokesperson for CannaMed of Boston said the company is a medical practice. He said patients would bring their medical records from their primary physicians to CannaMed's doctors. Doctors at CannaMed would evaluate the patient, review the records and them "determine if they qualify for a recommendation for marijuana." The company can not and will not distribute the marijuana, he said.
It was unclear yesterday from the state's health department if it would be legal to write any marijuana recommendation in Massachusetts before 2013.
It is also unknown if a recommendation written in Massachusetts could be filled out of state or via mail, as currently no locations have been established in the Commonwealth to distribute medical marijuana or fulfill a medical marijuana recommendation yet.
The directory listing on Framingham Patch for CannaMed of Boston states it is "now scheduling appointments for patients with debilitating medical conditions. (If you don't qualify, you don't pay.)"
"Insurance does not cover this," said the spokesperson at CannaMed of Boston Thursday on the phone to Framingham Patch.
Neither Framingham Town Manager Bob Halpin nor Framingham Selectmen Chair Charlie Sisitskywere aware of the new business until Framingham Patch contacted them Thursday afternoon. Halpin said he would instruct the building inspector to visit the business.
Halpin said it was his understanding that no medical marijuana business could begin operating in the state until the state's health department issued rules and regulations.
He said the Massachusetts Municipal Association estimated those rules & regulations may come in April, but the Association was recommending that everything be delayed until July 1, 2013.
"I don't believe, from what I have read from the MMA, that a business can write a prescription," said Halpin.
Three legal experts contacted by Framingham Patch said as the law was written and passed by the voters, it was their opinion that no medical marijuana could be prescribed or distributed until at least January 1, 2013, with or without regulations."
According to the boston.com story, CannaMed is owned by doctors who originally come from the Boston area.
The issue of where medical marijuana dispensaries might be located has been a heated topic of conversation on Patch sites and elsewhere after Massachusetts voters last month approved the medical use of marijuana in a ballot initiative vote.