The COVID-19 pandemic has caused massive changes in almost every industry, as businesses not deemed essential by the government came to a screeching halt almost overnight. While the cannabis industry has remained operational during the crisis, it too has faced many changes as it rushed to adapt policies that would ensure consumers could get supplies without risking contracting the virus. In this article, Daniel Fung Watertown CT marijuana expert lists a few notable shifts that have occurred during the health crisis and what these changes may mean for the industry going forward.
Marijuana Deemed Essential
Daniel Fung Watertown CT marijuana expert acknowledges that, while marijuana is still outlawed by the federal government, marijuana dispensaries have been acknowledged as essential businesses in over 20 states. There are quite a few implications of this decision, with some of the most notable being linked to what this distinction will mean for perception of marijuana use moving forward. Many experts in the marijuana industry believe that the essential brand is a step in the right direction for legalization reaching more states, which would increase the level of access for those that could benefit from medical use but currently reside in states that are holding firm on keeping marijuana outlawed.
Medical Marijuana Access Reshaping
While there are many states that are not currently allowing initial appointments for medical marijuana recommendations in office, states such as Delaware, Ohio, and Minnesota have allowed patients to consult a physician via telehealth to receive a recommendation. Using telehealth for cannabis recommendations is a very new concept and it is possible that, during the crisis, more states will allow for telehealth to be used to assess if an individual that is seeking access to medical marijuana. If this trend continues, Daniel Fung Watertown CT cannabis industry expert and other experts within the field believe that telehealth could be used to improve access to medical marijuana for those that do not have easy access to a physical doctor’s office (or the money to pay a higher copay for an in office visit).
Delivery Option Here to Stay
Before the COVID-19 crisis, few states offered customers the option for legal delivery of medical and recreational cannabis. In response to the crisis, however, many states have allowed for delivery to take place as customers stocked up on supplies to comply with the stay at home orders. Daniel Fung Watertown CT cannabis expert acknowledges that the convenience of implementing delivery services in the industry makes it rather unlikely that some customers will go back to shopping in stores. Experts believe that more brick and mortar stores will begin offering delivery even after the pandemic ends, which means that there will be a surge in applications for additional cannabis licenses to provide that service. Online orders are also expected to continue to surge post-crisis, as several consumers note how simple the process is.