New York medical marijuana patients pay some of the highest prices in the country for their medicine. Etain dispensaries are trying to ease the financial burden a little at a time. Those that frequent Etain’s four dispensaries, or become regular visitors, will start seeing small discounts on their purchases.
Some New Yorkers end up spending thousands of dollars a month for their medical marijuana, according to Times-Union. For every $100 a patient spends a $5 discount will be given. Patients can receive up to $15 per $100 spent.
The discounts will start being applied to purchases on January 31 at all of Etain’s four New York locations.
CEO of Etain, Hillary Peckham, said, “It’s necessary to provide access to patients first. If we can find more ways for patients to afford the medication, then more people can access the program.”
At last count, the New York medical marijuana program has 12,764 registered patients. Etain speculates that 20 percent of the state’s new medical marijuana patients don’t return to dispensaries due to the cost of products. One doctor, Dr. Francisco Gomez says that 15 percent of his patients did not go back to a dispensary due to the cost. Many are returning to cheaper, prescribed painkillers or the black market to obtain their medicine.
Dr. Gomez said, “What about half of them do is they’ll try to hoard it, so they’ll save it for when they really, really, really need it. I have few patients who say they will just try to go without it, use it less often.”