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NATRONA HEIGHTS (KDKA) – A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held Thursday morning for a medical marijuana clinic in Natrona Heights.
Compassionate Certification Centers’ new location along Freeport Road is the sixth they have opened in the last six months.
“Today’s really the big day, the grand opening, that we’re celebrating having another office opening up in the community,” CCC’s Chief Medical Officer Dr. Bryan Doner said. “We’re purely a health care organization, we do not supply the product, we don’t grow the product, we just have providers and we deal with patients.”
More than 36,000 patients are registered for Pennsylvania’s medical marijuana program.
“So I’m happy that this facility opened close [by], so that I could come up here and get registered,” said patient Dorothy Fallone, of Arnold. “I have scleroderma and it’s not curable and I’ve tried a lot of medications.”
The office will provide medical cannabis certifications, evaluations and treatment for patients with one of 17 state qualifying conditions.
“When you look at medical marijuana in general, really the conditions that are there are designed to fill some gaps in health care that people, their needs haven’t been met,” said Dr. Doner.
Rachelle Beavers says her son has a seizure disorder, and medical marijuana has helped cut his episodes in half.
“It’s awesome, we were willing to drive to Pittsburgh. We’ve been waiting about three years, but we had to come off some medicines before we could try the medical marijuana so we’re just super excited,” Beavers said.
Due to marijuana being a “Schedule One” controlled substance, medical marijuana isn’t covered by insurance. Everything is purchased out of pocket.