A Medical Marijuana Dispensary or an Alternative Treatment Center (ATC) in the state of New Jersey is a facility that is permitted to grow and dispense medicinal marijuana to qualifying registered patients for their medical use.
Alternative Treatment Centers are not permitted to deliver medicinal marijuana.
Visiting a Dispensary
Walk-ins are not allowed in an Alternative Treatment Center (ATC). Visitors must first schedule an appointment to the designated ATC in order to obtain your medical marijuana. Both registered qualifying patient and the designated caregiver must present a registered identification card (MPP Card) as proof that the patient is qualified to use medical marijuana and that the caregiver may legally possess and transport marijuana for medical use by the patient. Only registered patients and their designated caregivers are allowed to pick up or obtain medical marijuana inside an ATC.
Starting a Dispensary
To start an Alternative Treatment Center, the Department of Health of New Jersey requires that the facility must be licensed to grow and dispense medicinal marijuana. The Compassionate Use of Medicinal Marijuana Act authorizes the Department to verify complete information on the application form in order to approve an ATC license and to ensure effective documentation of the operations of each ATC prior to the issuance of the license. In addition, the Department will monitor and investigate all activities concerning each ATC seeking to operate in New Jersey. According to the state rules, the facility must be operated as a nonprofit agency. The organization includes officers, directors, board members, and employees.
- Must be 18 years of age or above.
- Must never have been convicted of felony drug use or possession.
- Provide written verification of the municipal government body in which the ATC will be located.
- Fingerprinting and criminal history background checks are required of every owner, director, officer, and employee of an ATC.
- A detailed description of safety and security measures including a plan for an enclosed, locked facility that would be used for the cultivation of medicinal marijuana and to assure coordination with local law enforcement.
- A plan for inventory, record keeping, and protection of personal healthcare information.
- A plan to track and analyze data on patient outcome.
- A plan to provide counseling and educational materials on methods of using medicinal marijuana and promote research studies on health effects.
- A draft operations manual and staff training plan.
- A quality control program to ensure the quality of the medicinal marijuana, including purity, potency, and consistency of dose.
- A plan to dispose of unusable marijuana.