New Doctor Requirement Could Dampen Arizona’s MMJ Market

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Arizona dispensaries could see fewer new patients after the state’s governor signed a bill forcing naturopathic doctors to provide documentation on medical marijuana recommendations.

The new rule, which take effect on July 3, say that naturopathic doctors must show which medical records they are citing when recommending medical marijuana to patients, according to the Arizona Daily Sun.

Lawmakers said 20 of the 24 doctors who recommend medical marijuana the most are naturopaths. That, they say, indicates that many are shrugging off a requirement that physicians have a bona-fide relationship with their patients, the newspaper reported.

Arizona’s 2010 law allowing MMJ doesn’t specify what a “bona-fide” relationship is, leading to the new law.

The state’s MMJ program has faced myriad difficulties since Gov. Doug Ducey issued a moratorium on rule-making for state agencies, effectively putting the licensing process for new medical cannabis businesses on hold until late this year.