Michigan has banned the use of several words commonly associated with cannabis dispensaries. One of which is the term "dispensary" itself.
The strict regulations around language are meant to create clarity for patients, according to David Harns - a spokesperson for Michigan's Bureau for Medical Marihuana Regulation. (That's right, lawmakers in the Wolverine State still spell marijuana with an 'h.')
"It's not really a change, it’s more of a clarification," Harns told Marijuana.com. "State law has always said the public health code defines who can use the term ‘dispensary’ and all the other words we put in the advisory."
Medical marijuana advocates aren't entirely convinced though. Some argue that replacing dispensary with "Medical Marihuana Provisioning Center" isn't that helpful.
"While changing the use of dispensary to ‘Medical Marihuana Provisioning Center’ is a minor one, it could create confusion for patients depending on what the state decides to call facilities that end up participating in the adult use market,” said David Mangone of Americans for Safe Access.
Mangone does, however, agree that the "banning of terms like prescription is good policy." This is because doctors can't actually prescribe cannabis, only recommend it. It has yet to be seen if Michigan's decision to regulate the use of terms such as "drug store," "pharmacy" and "apothecary" effects patient access to medical marijuana.