Three years ago, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New York state legislators made medical marijuana legal. It was welcome news for patients in the Empire State looking to alleviate pain and treat illnesses with cannabis.
But ask New Yorkers how the program is working and you will get an earful. Sure, it may be legal. But good luck trying to get it. There are multiple hoops that need jumping through — and even then the time it takes to do it will turn off most full-time workers.
The first thing you have to understand is that under New York law, the actual smoking of cannabis remains illegal. Edible marijuana is not allowed either. Medical marijuana in New York means liquids, vape oil, inhalers and capsules.
The next barrier is the short list of qualifying conditions. These include cancer, HIV/AIDS, Parkinson’s disease, epilepsy, Lou Gehrig’s disease, inflammatory bowel disease, multiple sclerosis, spasticity, Huntington’s disease, neuropathy and — as just recently chronic pain and menstrual cramps.
If you live in or near Manhattan and you have a qualifying condition, getting a doctor’s certification is not too difficult. There are plenty of registered physicians in the system that can help. But if you live outside the major metropolitan area, good luck finding a doc.
by Terry Hacienda – nydailynews.com