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Medical Cannabis from the Pharmacy's Perspective

UtahMarijuana.org is all about helping patients get their Medical Cannabis cards. We staff our clinics with Qualified Medical Providers who are always at the ready to sit down and talk about Medical Cannabis with patients. From time to time, we also enjoy talking with pharmacy owners and pharmacy medical providers (PMPs). They have a different perspective altogether.

As a patient, you look at Medical Cannabis through the lens of how it helps you feel better. The PMP looks at it from the perspective of dispensing medication. That is what pharmacists do. And yet, they also have to do what they do in keeping with state regulations.

Then there is the pharmacy owner’s perspective. To owners, Medical Cannabis is more than a medicine. It is also a business. They have to run their businesses in such a way as to keep customers happy while maintaining compliance with the law. Along the way, they have to generate enough revenue to stay in business.

Different Perspectives of the Same Drug

Our team members have the opportunity to interact with all sorts of people in the Medical Marijuana space. Of course, we talk with patients. We help them get their Medical Marijuana cards and recommend different products and delivery methods. But it doesn’t stop there. We also get to hang with:

  • Pharmacy owners and PMPs
  • Pharmacy techs
  • Growers and processors
  • Medical Marijuana advocates
  • Politicians and lobbyists

There really are a ton of people that make Utah’s Medical Cannabis program work. They all have a different perspective on the same drug, which is really the most fascinating aspect. There are so many people who look at Medical Cannabis from perspectives that other people cannot truly appreciate.

Maintaining the Delicate Balance

Getting back to the pharmacy, both business owners and PMPs have a lot of responsibility. They have to maintain that delicate balance between keeping the state happy and doing everything they can to help patients. It can be a tough row to hoe at times.

Imagine being a PMP and knowing that your shelves might not be fully stocked by the end of the week. You know you will have patients coming in for a particular product that you probably won’t have on hand. Now what do you do? Hopefully, you will have something else you can recommend.

Doing Business with the EVS

Do not forget the state’s electronic verification system (EVS). Both QMPs and PMPs have to deal with it. But the pharmacy’s interaction with the EVS is far more than ours. They have to work with it every time they fill a patient order. That could be dozens of times every day – if not hundreds.

Understand that the EVS is continually evolving. QMPs and PMPs are constantly having to learn new things about it. We are doing our best to keep up. From the pharmacy’s perspective, the EVS is a helpful tool when all goes as it should. But it has its days.

They Do Good Work

Overall, the Medical Cannabis pharmacies in our state do good work. We appreciate their willingness to take on an industry that can be tough to navigate. We also appreciate that they are willing to endure some of the less appealing aspects of the business while Utah’s Medical Cannabis program matures.

We currently have fourteen licensed pharmacies in the state. They are your only legal outlet for Medical Cannabis in Utah. Remember that it is no longer legal to buy your medicine out-of-state and bring it across state lines. If you have a Medical Cannabis card, you must buy your products from a licensed Utah pharmacy.

By UtahMarijuana.org
Published July 30, 2021
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