Ohio board OKs large increase in medical pot dispensaries

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — The Ohio Board of Pharmacy voted on Monday to more than double the number of medical marijuana dispensaries in the state to deal with patient complaints about lack of access and high prices.

Board officials said 73 more dispensaries will be added over the next year. Details about the application process are expected to be released sometime this spring or summer. Currently, 52 dispensaries are open for business in Ohio.

The number of people who have registered to purchase medical marijuana is far higher than anticipated since dispensaries opened in January 2019, the board said in a presentation.

Officials said they had expected between 12,000 and 24,000 people to register as medical marijuana patients during the first two years of the program, but there were more than 135,000 as of January.

Three of the state’s 31 medical marijuana districts, all in western Ohio, have no dispensaries.