Pennsylvania's medical marijuana program was passed under the language that it would be distributed for and alongside research studies, but regulators have not stayed true to the original intention. Medical cannabis dispensaries in Pennsylvania began selling to patients earlier this year, but there have been many delays with the research side. "Clinical Registrants" was the label given to those entities that should be fufilling the research aspect of the program, yet officials say the title is being used to push for more permits for growers/processors/dispensaries instead. Rather, if regulators want more cannabis businesses it should reflect through the legislation, not intentionally misinterpret the already passed law. A judge has put a hold on the research process until it the regulatory committee alligns the intentions of both research and sales.
"Research is a vital component of Pennsylvania's medical marijuana program to improve treatment options for patients suffering from serious medical conditions, including opioid-use disorder," Hutcheson said. "The research program was rolled out in consultation with the sponsors of the original legislation and our approach was meant to ensure lower costs, more accessibility and ground-breaking treatments."