Director of Canadian Cannabis Clinics, Which Prescribes Pot to Patients, Warns That Patients Using Unauthorized Dispensaries Risk Not Having Their Prescriptions Renewed

Article by Dale Carruthers, London Free Press

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Medical marijuana users who buy their pot from illegal dispensaries risk not having their prescriptions renewed.

That’s the warning doctors at a London clinic specializing in prescribing pot are giving their patients, said Ronan Levy, director of Canadian Cannabis Clinics.

But the operator of London’s newest dispensary — engaged in a showdown with police that illustrates confusion over Canada’s pot laws — calls the warning “bullying.”

Setting up shop in London more than a year ago, doctors at Canadian Cannabis Clinics assess patients and write prescriptions for medical marijuana. Though a referral from a family doctor is preferred, it’s not required at the clinic.

“Absolutely we do not recommend that patients purchase through dispensaries,” Levy said from Vancouver.

The proliferation of dispensaries across Canada — there’s an estimated 350 — is causing confusion among patients on the legal status of the businesses, Levy said.

Under federal law, authorized patients can only buy marijuana for medicinal use from a few dozen government-approved commercial producers.

“If a patient goes to a dispensary and purchases from there, as opposed to one of Health Canada’s licensed producers, they won’t continue to provide a prescription to those patients,” Levy said of his doctors.

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