Ohio Cannabis Dispensaries Deemed Essential During Outbreak

As per an official order by Gov. Mike Dewine (R), medical cannabis dispensaries in Ohio can remain open to patients during the state’s COVID-19 stay-at-home order.

Full story after the jump.

Ohio’s medical cannabis dispensaries will remain open during the state’s stay-at-home order issued last night by Gov. Mike Dewine (R), Cleveland.com reports. Other states that have issued similar orders – including Washington, California, New York, and Illinois – have also deemed cannabis dispensaries “essential.”

Under these orders, all non-essential businesses are forced to close but governments have so far allowed both medical and recreational dispensaries to remain open. In Ohio, the state Board of Pharmacy reaffirmed last week that medical cannabis is considered medicine under state laws. There are more than 95,000 registered patients in the state.

In Washington, regulators announced that dispensaries would be temporarily allowed to offer “curbside service” in light of the virus.

On Friday, Weedmaps reported that the average dollar value of purchases made through the app in California doubled on pickup orders and increased 37 percent on deliveries amid the spread of the coronavirus, according to Politico. Eaze said overall deliveries were up 19 percent, while product volume per delivery increased 25 percent. Overall, California’s cannabis sales after Thursday’s shelter-in-place order spiked 200 percent.

Under Ohio’s order, citizens can still go to the doctor, pick up medical supplies, go shopping for groceries and other essentials like car parts and equipment to work from home, and recreate outdoors (but playgrounds are closed). The state’s restaurants and bars can only offer takeout services.

Ohio has 351 confirmed coronavirus cases in 40 counties, according to Cleveland.com. The disease caused by the virus – COVID-19 – has led to three deaths in the state and dozens of hospitalizations.

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