LEBANON, Ohio — Mac Amin knows not everyone in Lebanon will welcome or understand About Wellness, the first medical marijuana dispensary in the Greater Cincinnati area, when it opens next week. He got a taste of that skepticism during the two years he spent applying for permits and negotiating with members of City Council.
Trying to open up “went 50/50,” he said Wednesday night. “It could have gone either way. After speaking to a lot of councilmen and councilwomen, we were able to at least educate them as to what we’re doing here, what medical marijuana is, what dispensaries are doing.”
He believes, however, that there are people in the community who can benefit from what medical marijuana offers — even people who have waited months for a dispensary in their community. One of the reasons his company decided to open in Ohio was to offer a form of pain treatment that doesn’t involve opioids, he said.
“After doing some research, we found the unfortunate part is Ohio is number three in the nation in opiate overdoses,” he said. “There are patients out there looking for a different form of medication.”
No one will be allowed inside the building without a card proving they have a prescription from a doctor certified to prescribe medical marijuana, he added. When they step inside, they’ll be able to fill orders for products such as gummies, oils and tinctures.
All of these products will be made from marijuana cultivated and processed in Ohio, according to Amin.
As About Wellness gets closer to its grand opening, he said he hopes people who can benefit from medical marijuana will find the help they need inside and people who are warier of the concept will at least approach with open minds.
"We don't want to change your opinion,” he said. “If we can, great but if we can educate you just a little bit more to help you understand and you can formulate your own opinion afterward, even better."