New Jersey Health Commissioner Dr. Shereef Elnahal will give his tenth medical marijuana Grand Rounds lecture on Feb. 26 at Jersey Shore University Medical Center to provide physicians and health professionals with an overview of the Department’s Medicinal Marijuana Program and encourage doctors to participate in the program.
During the lecture entitled “Giving the Green Light to Medicinal Marijuana: An Overview of NJ’s Program and Evidence,” Elnahal will discuss the evidence that exists around medical marijuana therapy.
“New Jersey’s Medicinal Marijuana Program has grown significantly during the Murphy Administration,” Elnahal said in a statement. “It is important that we continue to share the progress we’ve made to make the program more accessible and consumer-friendly so that more physicians will consider registering.”
Approximately 41,600 patients and 1,720 caregivers currently participate in the program, with six Alternative Treatment Centers operating in Montclair, Woodbridge, Cranbury, Bellmawr, Egg Harbor Township and Secaucus. Six new medical conditions have been added, fees and wait times have been reduced, mobile access has been added and ATCs can open satellite locations.
The number of physicians participating in the program has increased by more than 40 percent, with 905 currently registered, according to the health commission.
Last month, Gov. Phil Murphy announced the addition of opioid addiction to the Medicinal Marijuana Program (MMP) as an eligible condition. The program will have expanded availability by allowing for the use of medical cannabis as an adjunct to Medicated Assisted Treatment (MAT) for all patients that suffer from opioid addiction, not only those with chronic pain. More than 30 patients have joined the program under this new qualifying condition.
In December, six businesses were selected to apply for permits to open new medical marijuana dispensaries. Two applicants were chosen from each of the three regions of the state—north, central and southern, increasing access to this pain-relieving medicine.
Commissioner Elnahal’s lecture series began in late May 2018.
Tuesday’s hour-long lecture will begin at 11 a.m. at Jersey Shore University Medical Center in the 10th floor amphitheater, in Neptune.