D.C.'s Medical Marijuana Program Off To Slow Start | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

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D.C.'s Medical Marijuana Program Off To Slow Start

Capital City Care is the first medical marijuana dispensary to open under the District's new program.
Chris Chester
Capital City Care is the first medical marijuana dispensary to open under the District's new program.

Advocates for medical marijuana in D.C. say the city's strict rules are having a chilling effect on the use of the drug.

City health officials told a D.C. Council committee that just 59 patients have registered to buy marijuana since the drug became available for medical purposes in July. Just over half of those have HIV or AIDS.

Owners of the city's medical marijuana cultivation centers and dispensaries say they are losing money. They also told the council that patients and doctors are afraid to participate because they don't want to break federal law.

The city only allows medical marijuana use for patients with HIV or AIDS, cancer, glaucoma and conditions like multiple sclerosis that cause severe muscle spasms.

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