PHOENIX - An Arizona doctor has unveiled a new machine that incorporates biometric security technology to dispense medical marijuana.
Dr. Bruce Bedrick, CEO of Kind Clinics, says his clinic will assist future medical marijuana dispensary owners with everything from licensing to marketing.
“We are the in the business of helping people get into the business and operate medical marijuana dispensaries,” he explained.
On Monday, Bedrick unveiled a new machine that he believes will streamline the process, be convenient for patients, and allow for better compliance.
Arizona voters approved medical marijuana earlier this month.
The device looks like an ATM and dispenses a measured amount of medical marijuana.
Since all of the patient’s information would be stored electronically, Bedrick said dispensaries and the state could keep digital tabs on who’s buying, how much, and where.
The machine also incorporates biometric security technology.
Before a patient can select a variety of marijuana on their prepaid debit card, loaded with points rather than money, they have to submit their index finger to be scanned to verify they are who they say they are.
Bedrick expects this will prevent fraud.
He is hoping Arizona can set a new standard in the delivery of medical marijuana to be an example for other states considering legalizing medical marijuana.
He said future dispensary owners could buy the machine from him, although he has yet to set a price.
As private businesses continue to gear up to make money on the newly legalized medical marijuana plan in Arizona, state health leaders are still writing the first rough draft of the rules and regulations involving dispensaries.
They will release the primary version of the rules to the public on December 17th.
From mid-December until February, the Health Department will accept public feedback first in the form of electronic mail and then in a town hall format.
The final draft will be available in March, one month before people can start applying to run the dispensaries.
Most don’t expect dispensaries to be up and running until the summer of 2011.
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