SCRANTON, Pa. -- Scranton's first medical marijuana dispensary will open to patients starting next week.
Columbia Care Pennsylvania will open its doors in Scranton on Monday. It's the first of three medical marijuana dispensaries the company will bring to northeastern Pennsylvania this year.
Columbia Care told us that patient care, quality, safety, and professionalism are some of its top priorities.
Officials from Scranton and Columbia Care Pennsylvania join each other in a ribbon cutting as the Electric City welcomes its first medical marijuana dispensary.
Nicholas Vita, the CEO of Columbia Care, is excited about what this means for folks in northeastern Pennsylvania.
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"When you think about the types of illnesses, chronic illnesses, acute illnesses, that are higher than the national average in this region, this is one of those products that could be an incredibly powerful tool in a toolkit that physicians and patients could rely on," said Vita.
Scranton's mayor welcomes medical marijuana in his city.
"Hopefully, medical marijuana will replace some of those prescriptions that are being out there for the opioid crisis," said Scranton Mayor Bill Courtright.
The dispensary is filling a previously vacant storefront in the Keyser Oak Shopping Center on North Keyser Avenue.
"Now it's going to house a company that I think is only going to grow so it's very important we welcome everybody to the city and the city is growing, it's growing rapidly and that's what we're very pleased about," the mayor added.
Patients will need prescriptions to get medical marijuana. They're encouraged to schedule an appointment at the dispensary.
Shoppers nearby are optimistic about the medical marijuana center.
"Yeah, with seizures and stuff like that I think it's really great because you know, what else works for them? There's not that much medicine out there that works," said Pat Marianelli.
"Oh, I'm fine with that, tell you what, I'd probably use it if I had too but I'm fine with it moving in," said Frank Boniello.
The company has set up 32 cameras in and around the dispensary. Columbia Care's security teams tells us the dispensary will be safe and secure for employees and patients.
They also tell us they expect to open facilities in Wilkes-Barre and Blakeslee by the end of this year.