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Nye medical pot applicants could benefit from Las Vegas office

Medical pot patients from Nye County now can use a Las Vegas office to obtain same-day approval for their medical marijuana patient card application.

The Nevada Division of Public and Behavioral Health’s first medical marijuana patient card application office opened on June 15. Officials said the space, located at 2300 W. Sahara Ave., Suite 800, will help Southern Nevada medical marijuana patients to receive a patient card on the same day they submit the application to the Las Vegas patient office.

In the meantime, Nye County’s lone dispensary, The Grove, will aid by pre-reviewing patients’ applications to ensure that they are complete and accurate, according to the Nevada Dispensary Association’s press release.

TJ Wright, general manager at The Grove in Pahrump, said patients will be able to book an appointment through The Grove for prereviewing.

“They are testing this process out in Vegas before they transition to other surrounding cities,” Wright said.

For those Pahrump patients who don’t want to travel to Las Vegas, Wright said there’s still an option to apply through the mail to the Carson City office.

Previously, a patient had to mail a request to obtain the application. That step and several others have been streamlined and patients now can obtain the application online, officials said.

Nye County Commissioner Dan Schinhofen said those who want apply for medical marijuana cards can get recommendations from a few local doctors, however all medical marijuana cards are issued by the state.

In July, patients are expected to be able to submit their applications online. The state is also working to remove the requirement to visit the DMV to obtain a card after the patent receives approval, officials said.

Riana Durrett, executive director at the Nevada Dispensary Association, said the Las Vegas patient application office is important because it allows people who have difficulty using the Internet to apply in person.

“It also signals that patients’ needs are being met and that there is an understanding that a patient should receive medicine the same day their doctor recommends it, as is the case with any prescription,” Durrett said. “The state listened to concerns about patients waiting for medicine that their doctor recommended and the state responded to those needs.”

According to state law, medical marijuana is an acceptable treatment for “chronic or debilitating medical conditions,” which include glaucoma, cancer and AIDS. It also includes a medical condition or treatment for a medical condition that produces cachexia, severe pain, nausea and seizures and persistent muscle pain.

The use of cannabis is illegal federally, however, Nevada has allowed possession and use of medical marijuana for more than 10 years.

A bill passed in 2013 by the Nevada Legislature allowed dispensaries to open.

Nevada currently has 24 certified medical marijuana dispensaries in the north and south. Nye County’s only dispensary, The Grove, opened its doors in Pahrump on March 2.

Contact reporter Daria Sokolova at dsokolova@pvtimes.com. On Twitter: @dariasokolova77

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