PO Box 360
Trenton, NJ 08625-0360

For Release:
June 6, 2013

Mary E. O'Dowd, M.P.H.
Commissioner

For Further Information Contact:
Office of Communications
(609) 984-7160

Compassionate Care Foundation, Inc. Issued Permit to Grow Medicinal Marijuana

Compassionate Care Foundation, Inc. of Egg Harbor Township was issued a permit today by the New Jersey Department of Health to begin growing medicinal marijuana.  The permit was issued after a comprehensive review including several site inspections, background checks of its corporate officers and a review of its security operations and cultivation facility.

Once a permit to grow has been issued, it takes approximately three to four months to cultivate and prepare the medicinal marijuana for distribution. Once the product has been tested by the state laboratory and the dispensary is operational and inspected by the Medicinal Marijuana Program, a second permit will be issued to operate and dispense as an Alternative Treatment Center (ATC).

Once Compassionate Care Foundation is permitted to operate as an ATC, patients will be notified of the opening date. Patients and caregivers can visit the Medicinal Marijuana Program's website if they choose to change the ATC designated to serve them. The change can also be made by calling the Customer Service Unit of the Medicinal Marijuana Program at 609-292-0424 and does not require changing ID cards.  Patients may refer to the FAQ section of the MMP website at http://nj.gov/health/medicalmarijuana/pat_faqs.shtml  for additional information on this topic.

Compassionate Care Foundation has indicated it expects to open in September.
 
Approximately 1,000 patients are registered with the Medicinal Marijuana Program. The 223 physicians enrolled in the program are listed by county and medical specialty. A complete list of physicians participating in the program can be found at:  http://www.state.nj.us/health/medicalmarijuana/find_phy_pat.shtml.  

A physician training webinar about the program that is hosted by Deputy Commissioner Dr. Arturo Brito and John H. O'Brien, director of the Medicinal Marijuana Program, is available at http://nj.gov/health/medicalmarijuana/presentation/presentation/mmp/mmp.html
 
Physicians can register online at the Department's website https://njmmp.nj.gov/njmmp/ by entering both their medical and Controlled Dangerous Substance (CDCs) license numbers. After the physicians' credentials are verified, doctors can submit the names of patients they recommend for medicinal marijuana who have debilitating medical conditions including cancer, MS, AIDS, muscular dystrophy, seizure disorders and Crohn's disease.

Several other ATCs are in various stages of approval. An ATC planned for Woodbridge is expected to be ready for inspection this summer.

New Jersey residents interested in registering for the Medicinal Marijuana program may do so by accessing http://www.state.nj.us/health/medicalmarijuana/pat_reg.shtml.  

Additional information about the program, including contact information for the ATCs, is available at: http://www.state.nj.us/health/medicalmarijuana/index.shtml.