Medical Marijuana Reaches Louisiana, but Is Price Too High?
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Doctors and clinics say some patients are finding the cost for therapeutic cannabis too high to treat their medical conditions three months after medical marijuana became available in Louisiana.
Nine pharmacies dispense medicinal-grade pot around Louisiana and set their individual prices. Those dispensary owners say their charges reflect an industry with start-up charges, small patient numbers and lengthy regulatory hurdles.
Medical marijuana backers spent years focused simply on getting a product to pharmacy shelves. Louisiana now is grappling with the growing pains of a new medical market and a patient group who can't use health insurance to cover costs.
Dr. Victor Chou has a medical marijuana clinic in Baton Rouge with more than 600 medical marijuana patients. He says about one-quarter of his patients can't afford the medication.