The new location is the first to service the southern section of metro Atlanta.
STOCKBRIDGE, Ga. — The third Botanical Sciences Medical Marijuana Dispensary opened its doors Tuesday in Stockbridge, coming just five months after the state approved the in-store sale of medical cannabis to patients.
The new location is the first to service the southern section of metro Atlanta and has those in need of the medication celebrating. Now, wherever you are, you are less than 30 minutes from a dispensary.
One such patient is Cheryl Faulkner, who has stage four liver cancer.
“All of my doctors had given me all this medicine; I had 46 different medicines,” she explained.
However, it was the eventual shift to cannabis, which she credits with changing her life.
“To this day, as I stand here in front of you, I don’t take options as I’m battling cancer. I choose medical cannabis every single time. I’m functional. I can live where opioids were causing me to be on the couch the whole time,” she explained.
Yet, despite the benefits of medical cannabis to people like Faulkner, many have been slow to register to purchase from a dispensary.
“We now know the number is 13,000 and growing on a regular basis, but I think that as patients become more familiar with the nature of the program, we expect that demand to grow,” Andrew Turnage with the Georgia Access to Medical Cannabis Commission said.
Dr. Robin Fowler, the founder of Botanical Sciences, said he and his team are not discouraged by the numbers either.
“It’s one of those things that, until it becomes available, it’s not quite a reality. It is different,” he explained. “Now, with patients having access to medical cannabis within 30 minutes of almost any location in Georgia, I really expect the registry to go up.”
Officials also said that the number of people who register is tied to the number of dispensaries that can open. So, more dispensaries won’t open until more people sign up.