Delays hurt patients needing marijuana

Ohio will miss yet another mark in its march toward the sale of medical marijuana — this one an assurance that sales could begin by the end of November. That is not going to happen.

According to Mark Hamlin, of the Ohio Department of Commerce, the two testing labs closest to opening are “tentatively” scheduled to open in mid-December. One of those is at Hocking Technical College in Nelsonville. (Last month, Hamlin said he thought the Nelsonville facility would open in early November).

Readers will recall the state blew right past its self-imposed deadline for the program to be “fully operational” in September.

Only 10 of the 26 licensed cultivators in the Buckeye State have been allowed to begin growing.

During the continued delays, the State Board of Pharmacy has put its patient registry on hold. The board, reasonably, would like to have some idea when dispensaries might be open and the medical marijuana available for sale.

There is a great deal to be said for government working deliberately in an effort to get this rollout right. For now, we still are able to chalk up these delays to a genuine effort to cover all bases.

But as the delays pile up; as the state misses deadline after deadline, it will be harder for Ohioans who hope to find relief from their medical conditions with a prescription for medial marijuana to remain patient with the bureaucracy.