Virginia’s First Medical Cannabis Dispensary Now Open

Virginia’s first full plant medical cannabis processor has opened in Bristol. Dharma Pharmaceuticals is one of four medical cannabis processors allowed to open across the state. Dharma opened to provide both high CBD and high THC oil-based products. Three other processors are expected to open in Portsmouth, Richmond, and Manassas.

Lisa Smith, who lobbied for the new law, drove from Richmond to purchase the first dose for her daughter Haley, who suffers from the intractable seizure disorder Dravet Syndrome.

“There’s been so many people on this journey, it’s kind of surreal that it’s happening.” — Lisa Smith, via WJHL

Virginia was recently the 27th state to decriminalize up to an ounce of cannabis, and now is the 34th state to implement a full-plant medical cannabis system.

In Virginia, any diagnosed condition will qualify a patient for medical cannabis with a “practitioner’s signature.” Once certified, patients must register with the Virginia Board of Pharmacy to access medical cannabis from processors like Dharma Pharmaceuticals. Individual doses are limited to ten milligrams and flower is not allowed. Virginia is the latest state to pass medical cannabis rules but not allow for home cultivation. 

In September, Virginia lawmakers advanced legislation to expunge cannabis criminal offenses that have been since been overruled or otherwise dismissed, such as under the state’s decriminalization law.

Originally Published on 2020 10 20 by Lukas Barfield |

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