MedBox considered for medical marijuana
NEWTON, Mass. (WHDH) -- Massachusetts voted in favor of legalizing medical marijuana on Nov. 6.
The law will take effect on Jan. 1.
Massachusetts leaders are working out how to distribute the medical marijuana. One company has come up with a dispenser that resembles an ATM.
The medical marijuana machine is designed to store and distribute the substance once it becomes legal for medical purposes in Massachusetts.
“This is the safest way to acquire and track in real time controlled substances,” said Bruce Bedrick, CEO of MedBox/Kind Clinics.
Bedrick said the machines would be operated by trained staff at state authorized dispensaries.
Patients with a doctor’s recommendation would get clearance with a state-issued identification card and finger print scan.
Some in law enforcement have concerns over safety and security because of the potential for the drug to get into the wrong hands.
“One of our biggest drug issues is prescription drugs because they’re dispensed -- you don’t know who may be taking them, you know who they’re prescribed to. Marijuana is going to be similar to that,” said James Hicks, the incoming president of Massachusetts Chiefs of Police Association.
“Those are concerns similar to alcohol when teenagers ask 21 [year olds] you know, ‘Can you get me some alcohol’ or any other typical drug that is out there. The bigger concern is what you’re not looking at is marijuana is currently all over the street. This is an opportunity to regulate it,” said Bedrick.
Opinions on the hi-tech machines, like the medical marijuana issue itself, are mixed.
“I don’t think it’s a good idea,” said one man.
“I’m worried about it, but I’m not extraordinarily concerned about it given how much damage alcohol does,” said one woman.
Bedrick said his machines are being used in Arizona, California and Colorado. In Massachusetts, state law allows for 35 dispensing sites.